Rafa Benitez gave some good news in his press conference yesterday and with the local journalists afterwards he went into more detail on the injuries of various individuals.
Midfielder Isaac Hayden is back in the squad after his ankle surgery and we would expect him to start the game today against Wigan alongside Jonjo Shelvey in central midfield.
Both Grant Hanley and striker Daryl Murphy withdrew from their International squads almost two weeks ago.
Ciaran Clark – almost fit again
But it turns out their injures were only slight and they also are available for selection today and we expect Grant to start in central defense alongside captain Jamaal Lascelles in the continued absence of Ciaran Clark.
DeAndre Yedlin’s thigh injury is coming along well but he is not available for the game today and Clark is still not quite ready.
This is what Rafa said yesterday as reported in the Shields Gazette today:
“Clark is still injured, but the others are starting to come back.” “Hanley and Murphy had little problems.”
“They have been working with the physios and fitness coaches, though, and they have been training.”
“We have to decide if they can play or not, but both have been training.”
“Hayden has been training all week, so that’s it. “Other players are fine, just little things.” “Yedlin is one – he is improving and progressing, but not available.”
“Clark’s knee is not very bad.” “But still he has a little bit of discomfort, and he has to carry on progressing.”
“With the medial ligament, you can have problems when you turn and when you kick the ball with your toes.”
“We just need to be sure that he can turn properly, so it’s just a question of time “
“Maybe days, or one week or something like this. “I will not give a time, but he is improving well.”
“It’s just about him having 100% confidence.”
That’s a good update on the injury front and maybe Ciaran Clark could be available when we play at Sheffield Wednesday next Saturday with Rafa not wanting to take any chances in bringing him back too early.
DeAndre Yedlin coming along well
It also looks like American Yedlin is fairly close and will not miss too many more games.
That’s good news.