The injuries are mounting up for Norwich as Daniel Farke revealed after the stunning 3-3 draw with Nottingham Forest on Boxing Day At Carrow Road.
Having seen his team come from 0-3 down to snatch a draw in the 98th minute, courtesy of Onel Hernandez, Farke gave a pretty bleak assessment to the EDP after the game.
Christoph Zimmermann was a late call-off, having struggled in the warm-up with illness again. He had been named on the team sheet but was replaced at the last moment by Timm Klose, meaning that City only had six subs for the game, just like against Bolton when Klose pulled up in the warm-up and was replaced by Ben Godfrey.
Emi Buendia was forced off with an ankle problem after an agricultural tackle by Claudio Yacob and Jamal Lewis was feeling his hamstring. When added to the news that Mo Leitner won’t be able to play until the end of January with ankle ligament damage, you can see that the injury count is rising.
“Emi, we are all concerned. He got a tackle on his ankle and it is already swollen,” said Farke. “We have to wait what the scans says but we fear we will be without him for the next games. He must be a major doubt.“
“Christoph was ill 10 days ago and felt weak at Bristol and came off. Then he was fine again but here in the warm up he felt some problems with his metabolism, he was close to a break down. He came back in and said he couldn’t move his legs” he added.
“I also had to substitute Jamal Lewis with some hamstring problems. He must be a doubt for the next games. Not too good at the moment.”
And then there’s Mo Leitner, who had already pre-empted his absence on his Instagram page.
“A ligament injury. Out until at least the end of the January,” said Farke. “He has to wear this big boot for 12 days and then we can integrate him bit by bit. Timm has been out, Grant Hanley was out after a long period and he is another key player. We have to find a way to handle it.
“No surgery, just a boot for next 12 days and no weight on it. Then we have to improve the load and we can expect him back in team training at the end of January.”
Having only just returned from a previous injury and only lasting 45 minutes at Blackburn, it’s a blow for both player and the Canary nation.
Mario Vrancic is a natural replacement for Mo, though and has been playing very well, so at least Mo hasn’t been missed too much. Tom Trybull is also an option and Kenny McLean isn’t far from a first team return either. Klose and Grant Hanley are both fit again and that helps in central defence but what happens at left back if Jamal Lewis doesn’t make it?
I can’t see Marco Stiepermann dropping back there as he’s just too useful at number 10. Max Aarons could play there with either Ben Marshall or Ivo Pinto replacing him at right back. We’ve not seen anything of Pinto for weeks now and he’s not even making the squad, presumably due to the “seven homegrown players” rule.
Ben Marshall didn’t exactly convince there in the opening weeks but would seem the most obvious choice if Max moves over to left back.
A week ago and we barely had any injury troubles.
It seems that a week is a long time in football 🙁
Read about that stunnning 3-3 draw from the Tuckster’s point of view by clicking here.