The international window has just closed after 2 weeks and EPL managers are already pulling their hair out as a result of the injuries sustained. Here, we review 4 potentially key absentees over this weekend.
The international break is indeed a break for some footballers not on international duty. For others, it involves new training methods and some draining matches over the period.
These 4 star players have come off the worse for wear following the 2 week break,
1. Wilfried Zaha
Crystal Palace coach, Roy Hodgson, referred to Zaha once as the club’s “MVP”. When reviewing Palace’s performances with and without him, it’s clear to see why.
The flying attacker sustained a thigh injury while representing the Ivory Coast and was flown back to Palace.
Hodgson will be praying for a speedy recovery as the Eagles have a dismal record without him.
2. Naby Keita
The diminutive midfielder injured himself while on AFCON qualifier duty for Guinea.
To rub salt into the wound, it emerged that Keita was eventually piggy-backed off the field by a teammate due to the lack of stretchers available at the stadium.
Liverpool coach, Jurgen Klopp, has criticised the international window previously and reports such as these will do little to change the German’s stance.
Keita is a definite absentee this weekend as his team face Huddersfield Town.
3. Sadio Mane
Another Liverpool player, Mane injured himself while on AFCON duty as well. The Senegalese flyer injured his hand in his country’s victory over Sudan.
Briefly.co.za gathered the player should be available in the near future following successful surgery to the hand.
4. Nemanja Matic
The Serb hasn’t enjoyed his best form this season but Manchester United coach, Jose Mourinho, would be gutted to not have him available for the crunch clash against Chelsea on Saturday.
The fixture marks a return to old territory for both Mourinho and Matic as both were employed at the Blues previously.
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