Garath McCleary: Reading winger out for rest of the season with broken ankle

Garath McCleary
Garath McCleary has made 21 appearances for Reading this season in all competitions

Reading winger Garath McCleary has been ruled out for the rest of the season with a broken ankle.

McCleary, 30, suffered the break in the Championship defeat by Sheffield United on 27 February.

Omar Richards has since suffered a calf injury to deepen manager Jaap Stam's injury woes with 11 games remaining.

"We've had a lot of injuries where you're thinking 'how is that possible?' but for whatever reason it happens and we have to deal with it," Stam said.

The Dutchman told BBC Radio Berkshire that McCleary does not need to have surgery and is expected to be fit for pre-season.

Mo Barrow, Sone Aluko and John Swift all returned for Tuesday's 1-1 draw with Bolton, and 17-year-old academy graduate Tom Holmes was given his debut in defence.

But Yann Kermorgant, Paul McShane, Jordan Obita, Callum Harriott, Joseph Mendes and Stephen Quinn were all unavailable.

Following Roy Beerens' January transfer to Vitesse Arnhem and Adrian Popa's loan move to Al-Taawoun, the Royals, who are 18th in the Championship, are particularly short in attack for the rest of the season.