Accrington Stanley winger Sean McConville will be out for the rest of the season after rupturing his Achilles in the New Year’s Day defeat to Rochdale.

The Reds talisman was stretchered off in the 32nd minute and it was confirmed on Friday that he will have an operation at Spire Liverpool Hospital next Tuesday.

His setback comes at a time when he was back having a real influence as Stanley climbed the League One table, the 2-1 defeat against Dale a first loss in eight.

“I am gutted,” said McConville. “It’s weird as I was jumping for a ball and I felt like someone had volleyed me in the back of the leg and I looked around and there was no one there.

“I knew it was bad and I just feel sick. I was in such a good run of form, I had scored five goals in five games and I felt like I was flying.

“I was back in the team, the team were going well and we were looking to climb the table.

“I have never had such a major injury before. I had an operation on my collarbone at Stockport, I had a plate inserted, but the surgeon said this is a bigger operation.

“I will be in a cast for two weeks, I will then be in a boot for six-eight weeks and then I start my rehab back.

“The aim now is to be fighting fit for next season.

“It’s a lot to get your head around and it will take me a few days, maybe weeks, to get around this as I am not a good watcher of football, I hate watching.

“Accrington physio Matty Donnelly has been superb and my family and friends have really helped me over the last few days. The people close to me have been superb as it’s a lot to take in.

“I want also to thank both the fans of obviously Accrington and also Rochdale for their support on the day.”

Manager John Coleman admitted: “It’s a huge blow for us but also for him personally.

“Sean has a strong character, the diagnosis is not as bad if the operation goes well and hopefully he will be up and at it for the start of next season.

“I know Sean, he will be keen to come back and he will work hard to beat whatever timescale is put on him.”