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Balanta nearing return for Daggers

PUBLISHED: 12:00 07 February 2019

Angelo Balanta of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Angelo Balanta of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Attacker has been absent since picking up an injury in win at Maidstone United on January 19

Luke Pennell of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)Luke Pennell of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Angelo Balanta could be fit to return for Dagenham & Redbridge at Wrexham in the Vanarama National League on Saturday.

The forward has not featured for Daggers since picking up an ankle injury in the 3-0 win at Maidstone United on January 19.

The 28-year-old had previously sustained an injury to that ankle earlier in his career which led to fears the Boreham Wood man may be set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

But Daggers physio John Gowens allayed those fears and revealed Balanta could be back as early as this weekend.

Gowens told the club website: “It was a bit of a naughty tackle from behind and with Angelo, he had previously had an operation on that ankle.

“Angelo was initially quite worried about that, but it settled down over the days and he was due to start training last week, but the weather prevented that.

“It was a naughty tackle, but that’s football and Angelo has progressed very well.”

Gowens also offered an update on defender Luke Pennell, who had not featured since the 2-1 victory at Hartlepool United on December 1.

The full-back sustained an injury away from football which has led to his absence from involvement with the first team.

It seems, though, that Pennell may still be some way away yet from making a return to the pitch and in fact may struggle to do so before the end of the campaign.

“Luke had an operation done some time ago on a non-football related incident and went back to see the consultant last week, where he was given the OK to start training,” added Gowens.

“Because of the operation, Luke won’t be able to start heading the ball for another four to six weeks after he goes back and has another appointment with the consultant.

“Hopefully we can get him up and running and back in training and then go from there.”

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