BLUES manager Gary Waddock says he feels for Adam Hinshelwood and his family, after the 26-year-old was forced to retire from football with a knee injury.

Waddock said: “It’s devastating for him. He’s obviously had one or two injury problems throughout his career but this is a massive blow.

“He’s got a chronic knee problem and you have to listen to the specialist. He knows what is best and if he says you can’t go on then you have to listen.”

Waddock went through something similar himself when he was a Luton player, with medics advising him to retire from the game.

He went to Belgium and rebuilt his career before making a successful return to England.

He said: “I had to retire, so I know what he’s going through. I went abroad and continued my career, but his knee is in a far worse state than mine was.

“But it’s not about me, it’s about Hinsh and his family and our thoughts go out to them.

“He wants to go into coaching. He’s got a long rehabilitation ahead of him but he will continue taking his coaching badges and obviously we’ll do everything we can to help him, that goes without saying.”

Wanderers got Hinshelwood from Aldershot on a free transfer in January because of the player’s injury record.

He missed a month in February with knee problems and was also out at the tail-end of the season.

However, when he did play he was a big hit and Waddock made him his captain.

Speaking to the club’s official website, Hinshelwood said: “The doctors recommended that I never play football at any level ever again.

“They said if I played in the future there would be a chance my knee could crumble and I wouldn’t be able to walk again.

“I don’t want in a few years time not to be able to kick the ball about with my kids in the garden.

“It’s really hard to take and I will miss the game, but I’ve got a wife and kids to support and my main concern at the moment is not being able to put food on the table.”

Wanderers have not said yet whether they will organise any fundraising activities for a player who wore their colours 13 times.

Meanwhile, Hinshelwood’s premature retirement means Waddock must return to the transfer market to plug a sizeable gap.

He said: “Life does go on and we now have to find a replacement.

“It’s going to be hard because a fully fit Adam Hinshelwood is a very good player.

“We’ve got one or two things going on. We’ve got a few irons in the fire and we’ll have to see what develops.”