Derby County are sweating on Mark O'Brien's knee injury
THERE are growing concerns over Derby County defender Mark O'Brien's troublesome knee.
The 20-year old is set to see a specialist to check out the problem that has sidelined him for six weeks.
O'Brien limped out of the warm up before the game against Sheffield Wednesday on February 9.
He has been resting the knee but the problem flared again after a training session late last week.
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"We are a bit concerned about him at the moment," said manager Nigel Clough.
"He trained last Friday, no problem at all, and then his knee swelled up in the evening. He couldn't do anything on Saturday.
"We will know a bit more next week.
"Mark and Shaun Barker have been two big losses for us this season."
O'Brien suffered cruciate ligament damage in the same knee in December 2011 and he was ruled out for the rest of the 2011-12 season.
He returned for pre-season training but despite playing in a number of friendlies he missed the start of the season due to swelling on his knee.
His first start this season came in the 2-0 victory over Bristol City at Ashton Gate in December – his first action in 13 months – and Clough praised the "unbelievable character" of the youngster.
O'Brien started seven of the next nine matches before his knee forced him to take another break.
He has had some awful luck with injuries in the last few years.
"It has been difficult for him," said Clough.
"He is not 21 yet and he has had to cope with a heart problem, an ankle injury and cruciate ligament damage.
"And we hope this is not another one, but there is a possibility.
"He's had three or four big injuries but his character keeps bringing him back."