Rico Henry has suffered a suspected anterior cruciate ligament injury. Following a contact with Kieran Trippier, Henry went down awkwardly in the 39th minute of Brentford’s 1-0 loss to Newcastle United on Saturday.
In anguish, Henry clutched his left knee, and referee Craig Pawson signaled for a stretcher. However, the 26-year-old was able to get up and walk off the ground into the dressing room with the assistance of two Brentford medical staff members.
After the game, Thomas Frank stated that Henry will be evaluated on Monday, and scans confirmed the extent of the damage. The usual rehabilitation time for an ACL injury is eight months, which means Henry might be out for the remainder of the season.
Henry would be suffering his second ACL injury during his career. Henry suffered a right knee injury in Brentford’s 2-2 draw with Middlesbrough in September 2017. Henry did not play again for the club until November 2018.
This is a huge blow for Brentford. Henry has been with the team the longest and is one of the first names on Frank’s team sheet. Henry has only missed five Premier League matches since August 2021.
He is an excellent one-on-one defender who contributes to Brentford’s attacks by making overlapping runs on the left wing. Henry’s progress over the last two years has prompted requests for him to play for England, but Gareth Southgate has never called him up.
Full-back is an area of Brentford’s roster where there is a lack of depth. Aaron Hickey is ambipedal, which means he will switch from right-back to left-back to cover Henry. On the right, either Mads Roerslev, who replaced Henry against Newcastle, or Kristoffer Ajer will start.
Hickey, who started both of Scotland’s games over the international break, will see plenty of action in the coming months as the sole naturally left-footed option.
Due to Henry’s absence, Frank may opt for a 3-5-2 formation rather than a 4-4-3 for added defensive protection.