Chancel Mbemba has started every Premier League game for us so far this season but when he had to come off at Everton on Wednesday night just before half time we had both back-up center-backs Jamaal Lascelles and Steven Taylor on the bench.
Jamaal came on and got himself sent off at the very end of the game and is now suspended for tomorrow´s game against West Brom and Paul Dummett had a tight hamstring (again) and didn´t return in the second half.
Chancel Mbemba – unlikely to play tomorrow
Jack Colback just missed out on the game on Wednesday and both Chancel and Jack will be assessed today and we should hear from McClaren whether either can play tomorrow.
If we cannot win this game against West Brom it will be really serious because we are already 5 points behind 5th bottom Swansea and 2 points behind 4th bottom Norwich.
We have to start winning games if we are to survive this season.
Mbemba has been one of the few successes this season but now has to be doubtful, because he has suffered a recurrence of an ankle problem he had picked up in training – and it may too risky for him to play – better give him a week to recover than make the injury worse.
This is what McClaren said about the center-back:
“Chancel had had a knock in training and hadn’t trained for a while,” . “He passed a fitness test, but it looks as though he’s redone that.”
It´s also not certain that Jack Colback will make the game and if he doesn´t start at left back we suppose winger Rolando Aarons could start there with Dummett, Haidara and Mbabu all out injured.
All three of those players pick up a lot of injuries each season and it was a real pity we couldn´t get a left back in last month.
And we expect Steven Taylor to come in to partner Colo at the back and certainly the last time he played at Manchester United way back in August he had a great game – but here´s another player who picks up injuries every season.
This is what Steve McClaren said about Steven Taylor:
“We’ve got Steven Taylor, who is coming back to fitness,” “We have to look at the wounded and get a team out for Saturday.”
“With the left-back, we really tried to bring someone in, but failed to do so,”
“But that’s just one of those things that happens. It was unfortunate that all the problems came in defence.”
We expect injuries to start hitting the squad again – if only because that´s what´s happened in previous seasons at this time of the year.
And even though we always get lots of injuries each season nothing seems to be done to plan for that – like having a bigger squad than most clubs for example.