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By ESPN Staff

Injured Kirkland back at Wigan

Wigan goalkeeper Chris Kirkland has returned from his loan spell with npower Championship side Doncaster after just one match because of a back problem.

Kirkland only made his Rovers debut on Friday after signing a three-month deal two days previously.

However, the 30-year-old, for whom back complaints have been a recurring issue during his career, suffered a spasm and returned to the DW Stadium for treatment instead of playing in the midweek defeat at Blackpool.

"We were ready to see Chris in action on Tuesday but unfortunately he has had a little bit of a setback,'' said manager Roberto Martinez. "It is nothing too serious and we should see him back in the next six to seven days.

"We are talking about a minor problem and we will solve it pretty quickly.''

Providing Kirkland regains his fitness as quickly as expected Martinez is still keen for the player to go back out on loan - although no definite decision has been made yet.

"We have to make sure we give him the best possible treatment and get him back to full fitness and then we will assess it then,'' added the Spaniard. "It was great to see him playing against Leeds and now we need to make sure he carries on playing and gets himself fully fit.

"Chris is having treatment at the moment and we are not going to look into the loan situation. When we made the decision he was allowed to play football we haven't changed that and we will reassesses when he gets fully fit.

"We are not going to call the loan off yet. It is important we go step by step and the first step is to get Chris fully fit.''

Martinez said Wigan felt they had solved the long-standing problem with Kirkland's back.

"There were reasons why it happened (in the past),'' he said. "We were disappointed because there were things that could have been prevented from a preparation point of view but Chris is an experienced man and he knows why it happened.''


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