Joel Senior looks set to get his big chance with Carlisle United – with the Blues fearing a lay-off for Kelvin Mellor.

Right-back Mellor limped out of last night’s 0-0 draw with Hartlepool United with an ankle injury.

Manager Millen said the experienced campaigner left the ground in a protective boot.

The injury will be further assessed, but in the meantime recent signing Senior looks set to step up.

He produced a lively substitute’s display after coming on in the 35th minute for his league debut, and the ex-Altrincham man could now be in line for his first start against leaders Forest Green Rovers on Saturday.

On Mellor, United boss Millen said: “I don’t know what is yet, but it looks really swollen.

“He’s got the dreaded boot on, but hopefully it’s all precautionary, we’ll just have to wait and see.

“We’ll have to see how the swelling goes down. He wasn’t looking good after the game. I’m so gutted for him, because he’s been playing really well for us.

“But Joel’s come on and showed glimpses of why we brought him to the club.

“He got forward really well, looked a real threat and danger. I’m really pleased for him and he’ll take a lot of confidence from the game.”

Senior was United’s first January signing and the former Burnley prospect showed his energetic qualities down the right hand side against Pools.

“That’s what I saw in him – he’s got a lot of athleticism, he’s a modern full-back that can get up and down the line,” Millen added.

“We need our full-backs to get up and down because they give us the width at times. He showed glimpses of it and I think he can only get better.

“I want our full-backs to get forward, get wide, get crosses, so he fits the profile of what I want. He’ll be better for [his performance], definitely. I was pleased for him.”