Chelsea v Latics - Early Team News - Injury Update
Roberto Martinez has fresh injury worries ahead of the weekends game at Chelsea, club skipper Gary Caldwell returned early from the Scotland squad with a recurrence of a hip injury and he's rated at 50/50 for the game
Emmerson Boyce is still a doubt ahead of the trip to London, though he has been training this week, Martinez said on Boycey - 'Emmerson's hamstring injury at Stoke meant he missed out against Southampton at the weekend.
'It's not a major problem but we'll take it day by day and carefully asses when the best time to bring him back will be.'
Defenders are once again getting thin on the ground, what have we been doing to them this season! Long term absentee Antolin Alcaraz will apparently be back in training soon, I thought he'd already had been, but Martinez commented - 'Antolin Alcaraz should be training with the rest of the team very soon.' Now that is a strange one and perhaps there is more there than meets the eye.
With James McCarthy, James McArthur, Shaun Maloney, Franco Di Santo, Jean Beausejour, Ali Al Habsi, Roger Espinoza and Maynor Figueroa all away on international duty this week the gaffer will no doubt be sweating that they all return in one piece
One player that has returned fit and healthy is striker Arouna Kone who is back with the Latics following the Ivory Coast's exit from the African Cup of Nations having started just one game
Speaking about his star striker Martinez said - 'He's had a big disappointment in his season regarding Ivory Coast's exit from the Africa Cup of Nations, but that of course allows him to return to his club, train with the group and get ready for Saturday's game at Stamford Bridge which is a huge positive for us.'
'We'll asses how fit he is, but there's no concerns as to whether he'll be ready to play; we had constant contact with the player and medical staff whilst he was away and although he hasn't played much football, he did play 90 minutes against Algeria and his physical nature will ensure he doesn't have any trouble settling back into the demands of the Premier League.'
Martinez will pick his starting eleven from - Al Habsi, Caldwell, Scharner, Figueroa, Beausejour, Gomez, Jones, Maloney, Espinoza, McCarthy, McArthur, Stam, McManaman, Kone, Di Santo, Henriquez, Golobart, Robles, Campabadal.
Over in the Chelsea camp both Demba Ba and Petr Cech remain doubtful with a broken nose and a broken finger respectively, whilst Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel are both away on international duty, Nigeria have made the final of the ACN
John Terry has been ruled out with an inflamed knee
Chelsea boss Rafa Benitez will choose from: Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, Cole; Lampard, Ramires; Mata, Oscar, Bertrand; Ba, Torres, Ferreira, Marin, Turnbull, Azpilicueta, Benayoun, Ake, Luis.
The latest edition of the PWU Wigan Athletic podcast is now available for download.
This week in the studio are Barry, Dan, Gareth, Greg, Paul and Mick who discuss in detail the draw with Southampton (00:00), player performances and formations. The international break (19:25) is also discussed, fingers crossed that there are no injuries picked up.
There is a preview of Saturday's Premier League game against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge (21:40)
We finish off the proceedings with a difference of opinion on our survival chances this season, though I'm sure a couple of results either way and we'll all be in a little more agreement!
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The PWU crew
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