McInnes plans goalie swoop as Joe ruled out after injury blow at Ibrox

Joe Lewis lies injured at Ibrox.

Boss Derek McInnes today confirmed he will sign a back-up keeper before the January transfer window closes.

McInnes has had to move for a keeper after confirmation No1 Joe Lewis suffered knee cartilage damage in the 2-0 loss to Rangers at Ibrox.

Lewis is set to undergo surgery early next week and could be out for between four to eight weeks.

Lewis had played every competitive minute for the Dons since signing in summer 2016.

Danny Rogers came on for Lewis, 30, who was stretchered off at Ibrox, and the 23-year-old is set to start against Kilmarnock today.

Rogers spent two seasons on loan at Falkirk from Aberdeen and was a first team regular.

Landing a keeper would take McInnes’ January signings to four having secured Hamilton defender Michael Fevlin on a deal until summer 2021 for a nominal fee.

McInnes refused to rule out adding a further outfield signing before the winter window closes next Wednesday.

He said: “We will try to bring in the best keeper that is available to us. Bringing in another goalkeeper wasn’t part of the thinking in the January window but we have to react to that.

“Losing Joe is a real blow, I cannot pretend otherwise.

“We are fortunate that we have a keeper like Danny ready to step in.

“We are also fortunate that Joe’s injury has happened in the January window which will allow us to get another goalkeeper in.

“It is part of the recruitment team and Gordon Marshall’s (goalkeeping coach)remit to keep an eye on what may or may not be available.

“We have always got to be in a position to react to circumstances. The circumstances are that we have lost Joe and have to go and deal with that.”

Former England squad keeper Lewis sustained the injury in a collision with Rangers attacker Josh Windass that led to a penalty kick, which was converted.

The 30-year-old was immediately rushed to hospital where initial fears he had suffered a leg break were allayed.

However, following a follow-up MRI scan the prognosis delivered a major blow with ligament damage requiring surgery.

McInnes said: “We were delighted that Joe had not broken his leg which was a real concern after the game.

“We got news on that from the hospital on Wednesday night.

“However, on the back of the MRI scan on Thursday night we got the results that there was cartilage damage to Joe’s knee.

“It is quite a significant injury and he will get the operation at the beginning of next week. That will unfortunately keep Joe out for a period of time. How long we don’t know yet and I am not going to put a time on it.

“Danny has had championship experience the last couple of years and we have kept him with us to work alongside Joe and Gordon Marshall.

“When you are working alongside a keeper the quality of Joe sometimes the opportunities are few and far between. You normally get that through injury or suspension. Danny has his opportunity now and I am sure he will be relishing it.”

McInnes has secured Devlin, Niall McGinn, Manchester City midfielder Chidiebere Nwakali and will also sign a keeper during the January window.

He has not ruled out further additions.

He said: “We don’t have money to spend in January so every penny has to be accounted for.

“Whether we have to bring someone else in we will see.”

McInnes is also adamant defender Scott McKenna will not be sold during the January window. Hull City had a third bid, understood to be £700,000, rejected for the 21-year-old this week. Hull boss Nigel Adkins has admitted they could yet come in with a fourth bid to test Aberdeen’s resolve.

McInnes warned it would be pointless.

He said: “I cannot stop clubs making bids but I cannot reiterate enough that he is not for sale.

“Scott is absolutely fine with that.”

Meanwhile, Nigerian Nwakali could be set to make his debut later today pending international clearance.

A work permit has been secured for the 21-year-old, who signed from Manchester City on loan until the end of the season.

McInnes said: “His international clearance is the only thing that will stop him playing against Kilmarnock.

“He is in the squad subject to international clearance. We have all the work permits done.

“Unfortunately he has not trained quite the same the last few days as he had to go to Nigeria to get his visa.

“We are delighted we now have the opportunity to utilise him.”

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