Institute’s Darryl McDermott is back doing some light training and has targeted back in first team action next month.
The defender suffered a broken jaw in two places in their recent win at Ards, after accidentally colliding with goalkeeper Michael Lynch; he had surgery in Altnagelvin Hospital, but he has been given the thumbs up to return to training this week.
“The doctor told me that I can start back training now, not full connect training, but I’m now able to do some spin classes at the gym and a few circuits, which is great,” he said.
“The doctor did say that while I probably could go back and do ‘football training’ he did warn me that if the jaw was broken again that the operation would be more serious, so the gym will have to do for now.
“I won’t be playing football until after January, to be honest I had always set myself a target of after Christmas and now that I’m able to go back to the gym I’m looking to get back for around January time.”
McDermott did concede that he knew he was badly injured after crashing into the Stute goalkeeper.
“I knew straight away that I was in bother, as I was hit hard and although I wasn’t knocked out I was dazed,” he admitted.
“At first I thought I had lost a few teeth as I knew something was broken, but after Paddy (McLaughlin) had a look and said that there didn’t look to be any teeth missing, then I told them that I thought my jaw was broken.
“When I touched one side of my jaw the other side would move and although I knew that wasn’t right, I wanted to get back on the pitch and when I went back on I was happy that we saw out the result.”
The 27-year-old now jokes with team-mate Stephen O’Donnell that he broke his jaw.
O’Donnell celebrated the victory with a nice playful slap in McDermott’s face at the final whistle.
“In fairness I knew I was in bother and I couldn’t wait for the final whistle, but when I was walking off, Stevie came straight up to and gave me a nice pat in the face, in fairness he didn’t know that I was in bother, but since it I have slagged him,” he joked.
Thankfully McDermott had the two screws removed last weekend and he’s slowly starting to eat solid foods again.
“I got the screws out and my bite has started to come back, which is good because I have started to eat proper food,” he added.
“The last few weeks all my food has been blended and I’m sorry but it wasn’t nice, but thankfully that has now stopped.”