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Oakley sidelined for Steaua test

Published: Friday 3 October 2003, 11.08CET
Southampton FC will be without Matthew Oakley for the UEFA Cup return against FC Steaua Bucuresti.
Published: Friday 3 October 2003, 11.08CET

Oakley sidelined for Steaua test

Southampton FC will be without Matthew Oakley for the UEFA Cup return against FC Steaua Bucuresti.

Southampton FC will be without midfield player Matthew Oakley for the UEFA Cup first-round second leg against FC Steaua Bucuresti.

Ligament damage
The 26-year-old will be sidelined for up to six weeks with a knee injury after spraining ligaments in last weekend's 1-0 defeat by English Premiership rivals Middlesbrough FC. The news is a blow to Southampton, who drew 1-1 in the first leg against Steaua and travel to Romania for the return on 15 October.

Manager dismayed
Speaking to Southampton's official website, manager Gordon Strachan said: "It looked an innocuous fall but he has hurt the inside of his knee and will be out for a while. It is very disappointing because Matt and Fabrice Fernandes have easily been our best midfielders this year."

Le Saux worry
Southampton have had more bad news with left-back Graeme Le Saux facing another week out with a hamstring strain. He faces a race against time to be fit for the Steaua match. One positive development, though, is the return of Latvian striker Marians Pahars to training after nearly a year of injury problems.

Last updated: 03/10/03 14.09CET

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