NEWPORT County AFC midfielder Lewis Collins faces a month on the sidelines after suffering ankle ligament damage on international duty.

The 19-year-old came off the bench for Wales Under-21s in the 5-0 loss to Belgium last Friday.

Collins made four appearances for the Exiles this season before heading off for Leuven along with on-loan Swansea defender Brandon Cooper.

However, the midfielder is set to miss around a month of action with the Exiles, starting with tomorrow’s clash with Tranmere Rovers at Rodney Parade.

South Wales Argus:

“Lewis Collins did his ankle ligaments while away with Wales and is added to the injury list,” revealed manager Michael Flynn.

“He has had a bit of bad luck, every time that he seems to be getting close, getting a call-up to Wales Under-21s or does well in a substitute appearance he seems to have a set-back. It’s frustrating for him.”

Collins joins striker Ryan Taylor and defenders Kyle Howkins (both hamstring) and David Longe-King (groin) on the injured list.

Taylor faces a couple of months out, Howkins will miss four to five weeks and Long-King suffered a pre-season blow that Flynn said was likely to rule the summer signing out until around December.

Taylor made a strong start to life in Newport after moving from Plymouth and Flynn has challenged his remaining forwards to step up in the absence of the combative forward.

South Wales Argus:

"It's a blow because he started well and the other strikers have got to step up now," said Flynn.

"We've got to start getting hold of the ball and linking the play better, because I think that we missed Ryan at Cambridge last Saturday.

"It was a game that was crying out for him, to keep the ball up there and build the play.

"We didn't quite do that well enough, so this is a challenge for the other strikers, whoever that may be against Tranmere."