It’s looking like it will be more of the same on the injury front at West Ham United; at least for the time being.
David Moyes is likely to be without several key players for the visit of Leicester City on Friday; including Chicharito which is massive blow to the Hammers at this stage of the season.
Since José Fonte will be unavailable for the foreseeable future and Sam Byram has still not fully recovered from the thigh injury he sustained in training a few weeks ago, it looks as though little has changed in terms of the injury situation.
As expected, neither Chicharito nor Michail Antonio will be available.
With David Moyes thinking ahead to the inevitable busy period in December and the forthcoming schedule, you can hardly blame him for not wanting to take any chances at the moment with James Collins either.
David Moyes is clearly taking the sensible approach.
It would be very easy for him to take a chance on either Michail Antonio or James Collins at this important stage and then find that he’s going to be without one or the other - or even both - for a much longer period than he would have liked to; and all for the sake of putting everything into this next game.
Although Marco Arnautović has been cleared to play against Leicester, that decision will have been helped by the fact that the recent medical tests and scans failed to show evidence of any fracture.
Upper limb injuries in football are less frequent than injuries to the leg, and for that reason can be easily dismissed in the mistaken belief that these don’t have any real effect on how somebody plays.
The arms are essential for balance and therefore play an important part when running and sprinting; together with assisting in turning, jumping and stability when shielding the ball and holding off the challenge from an opponent.
Most injuries to the shoulder, arm, wrist and hand are the result of falling and landing awkwardly on the outstretched hand.
Outfield players tend to be more susceptible to injuries of this nature and direct contact with an opponent’s boot once the hand is on the ground is a hazard of the job!
So with Marco Arnautović in the squad and Michail Antonio, James Collins and Sam Byram out of it but continuing their rehab in the meantime, vital players remain unavailable.
Chicharito is also still having treatment on the hamstring muscle injury sustained on international duty with Mexico.
In fairness, nobody really expected him to be in contention for this game and it will likely be another week or two yet before he’s able to be considered fit enough to play.
Such is the situation at West Ham. First Slaven Bilić had to contend with a succession of injuries, few of which could have been considered as preventable and now David Moyes has inherited a squad where several players were already out injured when he took over.
It’s easy to be critical from the sidelines but he can only do so much until key players become available once more.
With so many people missing from the side his options are seriously limited.
He’ll be relying on Gary Lewin and the medical team to get everyone fit and ready for first team action again as quickly as possible; but without taking any chances on when they’re likely to return.