CARLISLE United defender Ben Barclay could be sidelined for 'six to eight weeks' with a calf injury.

The 26-year-old defender, who re-joined the Blues this summer after a successful loan spell last campaign, could potentially miss up to two months of football according to Carlisle manager Paul Simpson. 

Speaking after the Blues' 1-0 EFL Trophy defeat, Simpson had revealed that Barclay was set to be out for 'four to six weeks' but in a fresh update ahead of Carlisle's trip to Stevenage this weekend, he revealed that this timescale may have increased to 'six to eight weeks'.

However, The Blues boss did admit that there was some uncertainty surrounding the amount of time Barclay will be out injured.

He said: "I'm not actually certain, I thought it was six to eight weeks, but I don't really know, I have got to be honest, we just know he is going to be out for a number of weeks.

"Whatever it is, it is a calf strain, a 10cm tear on his calf so it is not just a niggly little thing, so we will wait and see how he is.

"We don't force people back quicker than they should be so whatever timeframe it is we will just wait and see."

Despite the uncertainty surrounding the injury lay-off for the United defender, Simpson did speak about how Barclay has to be mentally and physically prepared to deal with the latest in a line of injury blows during his Carlisle career so far.

"It's a real blow because he had a bit of bad luck last season with Ankle injuries, this was just an innocuous strain he picked up doing some top-up work on Saturday.

"It is not a great one and it is something where his rehab and his mentality has to be right now to get back as soon as he can."