Norwich City will have to take on the reigning Premier League Champions, Manchester City with up to ten first team players out injured for tomorrow’s match at Carrow Road, Daniel Farke told the assembled media at Colney on Friday.
The boss has delivered a sobering injury update this lunchtime. ???? #ncfc
— Norwich City FC (@NorwichCityFC) September 13, 2019
Mario Vrancic, Moritz Leitner, Christoph Zimmermann, Timm Klose, Max Aarons, Tim Krul, Grant Hanley, Max Aarons, Onel Hernandez and Tom Trybull are either definitely out or unlikely.
In terms of injuries that we already knew about, Christoph Zimmermann will be out until January, with Timm Klose being out for around nine months. Neither of the two centre-backs will need surgery but it leaves the squad desperately short in central defence for at least four months, effectively half the season.
Onel Hernandez is likely to be out for another six weeks and Tom Trybull will also be out for around six weeks with ankle ligament damage.
The real bombshell came when Farke announced that Ben Godfrey had come back from international duty with a groin strain, likely ruling him out of the Manchester City game.
It was already highly unlikely that Max Aarons would be available, having hobbled off with ten minutes to go for the England U21s on Monday night.
Max will not be available until after the next international break, meaning he is unlikely to play for Norwich until October 19th at Bournemouth, at the earliest.
Ben Godfrey is described by Farke as being “a major doubt” and Grant Hanley, although back in training is up to only “20-30 minutes” if required.
There are also issues in centre midfield with Mario Vrancic, Mo Leitner and Trybull all out as Farke explained.
“Mario has a calf strain and isn’t available for tomorrow. Moritz hasn’t trained for two weeks and also isn’t available due to fluid on his calf.
“Tom damaged his ligaments against West Ham and won’t be back until the next international break [following the match against Aston Villa on October 5].”
Tim Krul has over-extended his elbow in training and is described as “a slight doubt”.
Where Farke goes from here, I really don’t know.
In terms of specialist defenders, he has only Jamal Lewis, Sam Byram and Patrick Heise fit. Ibrahim Amadou can plays as a centre-back, as can Alex Tettey but whatever combination is used, they will not be used to playing together and must start against arguably one of the top three teams in the world, who are absolutely flying at the moment.
I wrote this morning that I feared the worst. After hearing this, it’s become a nightmare.
Strewth, if we didn’t have any bad luck, then we wouldn’t have any at all!