Daniel Farke had some good news when he spoke to the assembled media at Colney on Tuesday afternoon for his usual pre-match presser.
Norwich are away at “Frank Lampard’s” Derby County on Wednesday evening and although the City Head Coach had positive news about a return to training for Onel Hernandez, this game will come too soon for his much anticipated return to first team action.
Onel Hernandez is back in team training! ???? #ncfc
— Norwich City FC (@NorwichCityFC) October 2, 2018
Hernandez has missed the previous four games after a hernia operation, having last played in the 1-0 win over Middlesbrough on the 15th of September. Up until that point, Onel had been, arguably, City’s best player in the season’s opening weeks, although, after a run of five wins on the bounce in all competitions, there are now a few others pressing him for that accolade.
It will, however, be good to get him back because pace and directness are always welcome assets for any side. Tuesday saw the Cuban winger join back in with first-team training and Farke is looking at Stoke on Saturday as a realistic target, assuming Onel suffers no reactions.
The City boss has no new fresh injury concerns ahead of the trip to Pride Park, with Marco Stiepermann (illness), Todd Cantwell (elbow in the face) and Louis Thompson (hamstring) all recovering from their various issues to be available.
Ben Marshall will be a late decision for inclusion in the squad after missing several weeks through illness and Grant Hanley has had his final injection. Farke is hopeful that the big defender could be available and return to training after the international break. Whether he can get back in the team again though, is another matter entirely.
The only sour note from Tuesday’s presser concerns Kenny McLean, who is still feeling some pain and this is clearly a concern. He doesn’t seem to be anywhere nearer to a return to first-team training and that is a real shame because when fit, I’m hopeful that McLean will be an asset to the squad.
Fingers crossed that the medical team can get to the bottom of his issues soon.