Sam Finley is set to miss AFC Fylde’s trip to Eastleigh tomorrow in the Vanarama National League.
Symptoms of his long-standing condition of ulcerative colitis appear to have flared up again after a virus appeared in his system.
The hope is that it can be controlled, but as part of his treatment Finley needs to be on a drip twice a day for medication.
As such, it is thought that including him in plans for such a long trip to Essex would not be in his best interests.
Manager Dave Challinor told The Gazette: “Sam has some kind of virus in his intestine, which is now being treated.
“It might have been different and we might even have considered him for Saturday had it been a home game as he has been able to train.
“But we did not want him to make such a long trip as the one we have to make to Eastleigh. Sam’s health is the most important thing and more important than anything else.”
The Coasters make the long trek south after losing 2-1 in midweek at Macclesfield Town, where Scott Wilson scored the stoppage-time winner.
On the same night Eastleigh lost their unbeaten home record. The Spitfires went down 1-0 against Maidstone United.
Eastleigh recently boosted their ranks with the signing of striker Gary McSheffrey, best known for two successful spells at Coventry City.
Challinor said: “It’s not just McSheffrey – they have a squad of very experienced players, who have played loads of football at a good level
“We know what to expect from them as we have had scouts watching their last two matches.
“Eastleigh operate a big budget. They are an ambitious club and they are targeting the play-offs.”
Of the Macclesfield reverse on Tuesday night, Challinor added: “Losing matches is never something that you get used to.
“We did more than enough to get something out of that game.”
Seasoned striker Matt Blinkhorn is available for Fylde after his two-match suspension.
After those back-to-back wins over Hartlepool and Barrow, Fylde have taken just one point from nine and stand one place and three points above the bottom four.