DARLINGTON striker Jamie Holmes will miss the whole of this season after suffering a second cruciate knee ligament injury.

Holmes has spent most of the last 12 months recovering from a cruciate problem, with his work with Quakers physio, Danny O’Connor, enabling him to return to Alun Armstrong’s squad for pre-season training.

However, he damaged the same knee during a training game at Gateshead, and a consultation with a specialist has confirmed he has sustained further serious ligament damage.

As a result, he will require another lengthy period of rehabilitation that is expected to rule him out of the whole of this season.

Quakers boss Alun Armstrong said: “I feel really sorry for the lad because he has worked really hard to get back into first-team reckoning.”

O’Connor, who worked with Holmes during lockdown earlier this year, added: “I was really pleased with all the hard work Jamie had done to get himself fully fit. He was flying – then it’s happened again.”

Darlington kick off their season this weekend when they host Prescot Cables in an FA Cup second preliminary round game at Blackwell Meadows.