We had thought we were inÂ good shape with injuries yesterday but things are not looking as good this morning.
Â Abdoulaye Faye – has picked up calf injury
Owen (calf), Mark Viduka (Achilles) and Abdoulaye Faye (calf) have missed the Summer Cup trip to Mallorca, while Oba Martins (knee) and Steve Harper (shoulder) sat out the training session yesterday in 95 degrees morning heat yesterday.
We han’t realized that Martins and Faye were nursing injuries and worrying news is that Shay Given is still complaining of a sore thigh and trained on his own yesterday.
This injury is not related in any way to his old groin injury, that goodness.
Keegan told the Newcastle Journal today:
â€œWe knew with Mark Viduka that heâ€™d miss the start of the season so that leaves us with two and both are going to catch up,â€
â€œItâ€™s not like weâ€™re not going to have them for the start of the season, theyâ€™ll both be available for me if I want to pick them for the home game against PSV (Eindhoven), hopefully, and certainly Valencia a few weeks before the season starts.â€
Martins has some kind of knee injury and the Nigerian has only travelled to Soain to link up wiht the rest of the lads and do some light training.
Thta’s a good idea for the well-liked youngster, because he will be able to get the companionship of his team mates after the tragic death of his mother only recently.
â€œObafemi Martins is going to miss both games,â€ â€œHeâ€™s had an injection in his knee, which he needed.”
“We were actually going to do it before his mother died tragically. He had to go the next day so it just delayed the process.”
â€œHeâ€™ll be able to run today and kick a ball properly by about Saturday but heâ€™s missed ten daysâ€™ training so thereâ€™s no sense risking him, much as youâ€™d like to play him.â€
Keegan has also held back with players like Geremi, Faye and Jonas Gutierrez , because of their summer World Cup commitments, but still believes the fitness of his squad should be on a par with that of most other clubs.
â€œIâ€™m happy with where we are at the moment,â€Â â€œWeâ€™ve had a few little niggles like everybody else at this time of year â€“ blisters and slight little strains.”
â€œWeâ€™ve had to pull a few away for a few days usually just as a precaution and not anything too worrying but with a view that it would be crazy to lose players for a long period at this time of year. Itâ€™s a balancing act.”
â€œWeâ€™ve got some young kids here who wouldnâ€™t normally be with us but weâ€™ve still got a very good squad.”
“If they do well and you know youâ€™ve got other players to come back â€“ the likes of Mark Viduka, Michael Owen and Obafemi Martins, plus two or three others who weâ€™ve left behind â€“ then you want the team to do well so when the others come back in they can take it on again, thatâ€™s the ideal thing.â€
We reported yesterday that Mark Viduka still has the Achilles problem and had an injection and missed the last game of the season at Everton because of it. But he’s still not fit.
He’s still around 10 days away from fitness, where he can train fully again, but this doesn’t auger well for the upcoming season, since he missed so many games in his first season through injury.
Most of these injuries are minor and Kevin is right to be very careful at this time of year, and ensure everynopdy is ready to go once the season starts on August 17th, when we just must get off to a good start.
And we’d still like to see 3-4 top players brought in to fill out the squad, if we are really serious about trying to break into the top 6 by next May.