Mat Bailey, Nantwich Town (pic courtesy of Nantwich Town FC)

Influential Nantwich Town player Mat Bailey has been ruled out for the season with a cruciate ligament injury.

The big defender was dealt the bad news by medics today after limping out of the Stafford Rangers derby clash last week.

The club has yet to release an official statement, but Mat confirmed to Nantwichnews that he faces an operation on his knee early in the New Year.

And he is unlikely to return to Weaver Stadium action until the 2013-14 season.

“Devastated doesn’t come close to how I feel right now,” said the 26-year-old.

“Hopefully, I’ll undergo an op in January, and then it’s six months of rehab after that.”

Team-mates and Dabbers fans were quick to offer their support for the 6ft 5in former Crewe Alexandra centre-half.

“He’s a big loss, let’s hope for a quick recovery,” said one fan on the club’s Facebook page.

“We’re all wishing mat a speedy recovery,” added another supporter.

Fellow players Chris Flynn and Sean Cooke also offered him words of support on Twitter.

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