Forfar Farmington defender Sydney Cairns vows to return stronger after being ruled out for at least the rest of the year with a serious knee injury.
Last month the 16-year-old was injured in a 50/50 challenge and after scans it was discovered that she had torn both her inside and outside cartilage as well as her anterior cruciate ligament.
Cairns, who underwent surgery last week, said: “I’m absolutely devastated to be out for the season. I just need to focus on my recovery and make sure I’m better, fitter and stronger next season. The consultant said my operation was a success and that it’s all about resting the knee now with limited weight bearing until my next operation in six weeks on my ACL.”
Around the same time last year teammate Keira Johnstone also suffered a horrible knee injury, returning at the start of this season, and Cairns believes she can use the winger as a role model of sorts in her recovery.
“Keira Johnstone unfortunately had a bad injury last season too,” she continued. “She worked so hard on her recovery though and it shows. She’s been doing really well so far and also without any problems with the knee which is great. I know I’m going to put a lot of hard work into my recovery and that I will come back stronger.”
After last week’s defeat to Hibs, head coach Damon Neish spoke of how he felt Sydney was the type of player that he wanted to build the club around, which delighted the youngster.
She added: “It’s a great feeling knowing that he holds me in such high regard. It also gives me motivation to come back better and prove to him I am a player he can build the team around.”
Before the injury Cairns had made 23 appearances for the SWPL side, a great amount considering she made her debut just 14 months ago at the age of 14.
The defender believes that the step up has been made easier being surrounded by experienced players.
Sydney continued: “I’m lucky to have made so many appearances considering my age but having top players like Nicola Davidson and Nicky Grant to look up to has helped a lot in my development. Nicola Davidson is a great player and even better captain. She sets the standard at training- not just by how good she is but her work rate.”
This Sunday the side are at home to Stirling University.
Cairns said: “The team has had a tough start to the season but they’ve put in a few good performances. The next couple of games are crucial.
“They’re going to be tough but I’m confident the team will do what they need to do to get the wins and gain some momentum as the season continues.”