Crystal Palace will make the short trip across London to the Brentford Community Stadium this afternoon, hoping that they can pick up their first win in four, but Patrick Vieira has revealed a setback in his squad which will disappoint fans of the Eagles.
The Palace manager revealed in his pre-match press conference on Friday that youngster Nathan Ferguson suffered yet another “setback” on the injury front, with the full-back potentially now out for up to six more weeks having already incurred two long-term injuries in his time at Selhurst Park.
Vieira told the press: “Nathan had the hamstring setback, so he will be out for five to six weeks. It is a shame, because he worked quite hard to get back on the field with the team, but we will give him the support that he needs for him to come back and enjoy himself on the field.
“It’s a difficult period, but we will give him the love and attention that he needs to get back on the field as quickly as possible.”
It is clear that Vieira rates Ferguson, having praised the defender for being “really impressive” in his highly anticipated debut on Boxing Day for the Eagles, so the Frenchman will surely be gutted that the 21-year-old has suffered yet another injury setback going into the last few months of the season.
Although Marc Guehi and Joachim Andersen have formed an impressive centre back partnership this season, Vieira will be conscious of the depth and quality on the bench to cover positions should injuries occur, and the continued loss of Ferguson certainly hampers Palace in that regard.
Vieira will be hoping his side can take all three points this afternoon, capitalising on Brentford being in freefall over the last few weeks after losing their last five Premier League games. A win today could push Crystal Palace into a much stronger position to secure a top-half finish this season, but even a good result could be overshadowed by the latest injury setback for the desperately unlucky Ferguson.
In other news: Vieira could already have his next Selhurst Park hero