Crystal Palace’s season has been haunted by injury setbacks from start to finish and following last weekend’s 2-1 loss at home to Liverpool, boss Roy Hodgson revealed mixed news regarding the potential return dates of three first-team stars.
With only Christian Benteke available for selection at the head of the side, the gaffer is no doubt desperate to get both Connor Wickham and Alexander Sørloth back to full fitness but judging by what the he had to say about the pair after our loss against the Reds, we are unlikely to see either man taking up a place in the match-day squad against Bournemouth next weekend.
Following more than a year on the sidelines, Wickham is said to have tweaked his groin when gearing up for a potential return, with Hodgson refusing to put a timeframe on how long it’ll take for the 24-year-old to overcome this latest issue, fuelling fears that we may be forced to do without him until the 2018/19 season gets underway in August.
Sadly, January arrival Alexander Sørloth has also suffered a setback in his recovery from a hamstring strain, prompting the club’s medical staff to pencil him in for a scan on Tuesday to discover the extent of the damage. You don’t need me to explain to you how much of a boost it would be for both of the aforementioned men to be declared match fit but for now, it looks as though we’ll have no option but to persevere with the big Belgian up top.
Thankfully, there is better news in relation to James Tomkins’ return with Roy suggesting that he’s likely to play a part against Bournemouth on Saturday as things stand.
After cruising to a clean sheet against Huddersfield when James was partnered with Mamadou Sakho at the heart of our back four, plenty are holding out hope of the duo combining for a string of positive results between now and May but for now, we’re left crossing our fingers for the former West Ham man’s swift return to fitness.