Injury concerns for United as they head for Villa clash
Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed that his side have further concerns in regards to their injury-prone defence in the build-up to Manchester United‘s Premier League clash with Aston Villa this Saturday.
Out of favour winger Nani was also reported injured by Ferguson and will be unavailable for at least the next ten days.
Chris Smalling has been declared fit to play after being sidelined since the end of last season with a broken metatarsal, however there are now fears over Jonny Evans, who picked up a knock on Champions League duty against Braga in midweek.
United continue to be without key centre back Nemanja Vidic, who his unlikely to return until Christmas following a further set-back to his recovery from a knee injury, and Phil Jones is still on the mend following an operation in September.
The United boss told reporters today: “We’re hoping Jonny Evans is ok tomorrow. There is a doubt, not a serious one, but hopefully he’s fit.
“Chris Smalling is back – No issues with him at all, he did very well. He’s come through [from injury] very well.
“So we’re just monitoring the situation with Jonny, but if he doesn’t make it Chris [Smalling] will have to play.”
Meanwhile, Aston Villa have their own injury crisis as Darren Bent is sidelined with an ankle injury for an unconfirmed period of time, and Richard Dunne has picked up a strain since returning to training after a five month absence with a groin injury.
The most alarming concerns for Paul Lambert will be at left back with Eric Lichaj suspended and Joe Bennett also sidelined. The Scottish coach revealed in a press conference he will turn to 22-year-old Edna Stevens to fill in.
“Joe Bennett is a doubt but we will have to see. Enda Stevens came in and did really fine against Sunderland” said Lambert.
The substitute appearance against Sunderland was Stevens’ first in the Premier League since moving from Shamrock Rovers in January 2012.
“So credit to Enda for coming in and doing as well as he has done,” he added.
Aston Villa will face Manchester United in Saturday’s late kick-off at Villa Park.