It can be hard for a player suffering a long-term injury, especially when the manager changes while you’re in the treatment room. Liam Manning though has made sure to keep close tabs on David Kasumu since arriving at Stadium MK.
The 21-year-old midfielder suffered a hamstring injury in the Carabao Cup game with Bournemouth - Russell Martin’s final game in charge of the club before leaving for Swansea City.
With the injury set to keep him out for around another six weeks, new head coach Manning said he has made sure to keep Kasumu in the fold, speaking regularly to him during his rehab this week to ensure he feels a part of the fold.
“I've been conscious of it and made sure I've chatted with David a few times,” said Manning. “The danger when you've got a player with a longer injury, and the transition at the club, they can feel a bit isolated and not a part of the group.
“I've sat with him, had conversations with him and made sure he's ok with where he's at, what his plan is. He's heading in the right direction. I see him working hard in the gym, and he sticks his head into my office to say hello.
“He’s a really exciting talent. We want to turn the potential and talent into performances, which over the last year he has really started to do. He will be a really big boost.”
Still a way from full-fitness though, Manning said Kasumu, who spent four months on the sidelines last season as well, will return as and when he’s ready.
He said: “We'll get him back when he's ready, we won't rush him and force him. We need to make sure he's fit for the long term.
“We also have to be realistic - when you miss six or eight weeks, you have to take time to get back up to speed. He'll be a big boost for us and the team when he gets back.”