NEWPORT County AFC midfielder Reece Cole is set to undergo surgery on a knee injury.

The 19-year-old, who is on loan from Championship club Brentford, hasn’t featured for the Exiles first team since coming off the bench in the 0-0 draw with Wycombe Wanderers on September 9.

He aggravated a knee problem in a behind-closed-doors friendly win over Forest Green Rovers last week.

“Reece has got to have an operation so that’s not good,” said County manager Michael Flynn.

“It was a pre-existing problem and he had a reaction in the friendly so something obviously wasn’t right.

“Hopefully he won’t be too long.

“We’ll need to speak to Brentford and see how long he’s out for but, fair play to them, they’ve looked after the medical fees.

“They don’t have to do that so we’d like to thank them for that.”

South Wales Argus:

Cole scored the winner at Coventry City on his debut (above) and has made five apperances so far.

Striker Marlon Jackson will also miss Saturday’s trip to Luton Town as he is still recovering from a hamstring injury picked up in pre-season.

“Marlon is getting closer but I was told that seven weeks ago,” said the boss.

“It’s been a frustrating one for him but hopefully now there’s light at the end of the tunnel and he won’t be much longer.

“I’m not going to put any time on it because I’ve been saying two weeks for the last six weeks so he’ll be back when he’s back.”

Defenders Mark O’Brien and David Pipe, who were both forced off at Crawley Town on Tuesday, should be fit to play at Kenilworth Road.

“Mark had a couple of bangs on the head and I thought he deserved more protection from the referee,” said Flynn.

“He’s not ruled out but after the game he did look like the Elephant Man. He had a thick ear, a big lump on his head and his lip and a black eye.

“He was in the wars and he’s not a soft lad, he’ll put his head through a brick wall, but he needed a bit of protection.

“Pipey is a little bit stiff but you know what he’s like [he’ll be OK].”

But Flynn may make changes to his starting XI after naming the same team in the wins over Grimsby Town and Crawley this week.

“The Morecambe game [when County lost 2-1 on September 16] was on the back of three games in a week and we didn’t have any freshness so I’m going to have to have a good long think,” he added.

“Most of them are fit and they’re all competing for places so it’s healthy competition and that’s what the team needs.”