Norwich City team news: Alex Neil delivers gloomy Burton bulletin
©Focus Images Limited www.focus-images.co.uk +447814 482222
Alex Neil revealed he has fresh injury doubts ahead of Norwich City’s Championship trip to Burton on Saturday.
The Scot delivered a gloomy forecast on Friday afternoon at Colney with Nelson Oliveira (foot), Ivo Pinto (foot), Steven Naismith (hamstring), Youssouf Mulumbu (thigh) and Matt Jarvis (hamstring) all ruled out. Graham Dorrans and (knee) and Louis Thompson (Achilles) are longer term absentees and Neil is sweating on the fitness of two more key men for the Brewers’ trip.
“None of the lads who were unavailable against Newcastle will be in contention for this weekend,” said Neil “And to make it even better we have a couple of doubts over the ones who featured. They will be late fitness calls because of the close proximity of the game. 24 hours can make the decision a lot easier. I am not going to tell you who. I am sure Nigel Clough will be watching.
“There is nothing I can do about it. They are proper injuries. It is not soft tissue stuff. Naismith, you could probably argue, we tried to rush him back and we had a setback. Louis Thompson is one of the most unfortunate injuries I have seen and the rest are bruising and bone-related injuries. Youssouf had an issue he incurred at the African Nations. They are out of our control. We have to make the best of what we have got.”
Neil confirmed Oliveira will miss at least a month with a hairline fracture while compatriot Pinto faces a battle to be fit for next week’s derby clash against Ipswich Town. James Maddison has returned to the ranks after a back problem and will be in the travelling party to Burton.
“James has been improving and he has been training for the best of a week,” said Neil. “Nelson is going to be four to six weeks. It is not a break. More like a hairline fracture but we need the bone to heal. All the scans and initial prognosis has been done. But all that provides is a variance in terms of timescale, rather than an exact measure. We want to get him back as quickly as possible but we must also prepare for the worst case scenario as well.
“Ivo had a kick on the top of his foot and there is bruising. Sometimes that heals quickly but unfortunately for Ivo it has not healed quickly enough. I would be hopeful of a lot better news the next time we play.”