Daniel Farke eases injury fears over Norwich City midfielder James Maddison ahead of Derby County Championship test
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Daniel Farke held his pre-match press conference on Friday afternoon ahead of Derby County’s Championship visit - and the good news is James Maddison is fit after suffering a calf problem in the midweek League Cup exit at Arsenal.
Maddison has been a key figure in City’s upturn but was forced off at the Emirates after earlier setting up Josh Murphy to put the Canaries in front before the Gunners hit back in extra-time.
“He is available. He took a hit, several hits. After the game, he had some problems with his calf but he is okay,” said Farke. “Good players have to handle it. There are some hits and oppositions players want to get the ball and have to be aggressive against him. He can handle it.
“We’ve had two games in three days and high intensity games. We also had some injuries and that meant we weren’t able to substitute all of the guys so there have been lots of minutes for some guys.
“It helped having a longer break between Tuesday and tomorrow which is necessary after high intensity games. Directly after Arsenal, the situation looked worse.
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“We will have to rotate some positions because there has been a lot of load for some players - 132 minutes all in all. For the weekend it’s not so easy, Derby could recreate and watch our games with their feet up. But we can handle it.”
Nelson Oliveira played the entire game on Tuesday after struggling with pain in his groin over recent weeks.
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“Nelson is fit but not 100pc. I take responsibility for the decision but I wanted to risk him against Arsenal,” said Farke. “Josh still had pain in his toe but I wanted to risk him as well. I think it was the right decision to do this against Arsenal.
“Nelson was careful in the first 30 minutes but had a good second half. Normally I didn’t want to let him play 132 minutes but there were some other problems with other players. He has something inside and he’s always able to create special moments. But he can’t play four games in 10 days. He will be back with 100pc after the international break. He will make a short-term appearance tomorrow.”
Farke reported no other fresh injury concerns with Marley Watkins available after serving a three-match suspension. Alex Tettey (calf) is ruled out while Steven Naismith (ankle) has only just returned to training in recent days and will not be in contention.
Alex Pritchard, Jamal Lewis, Louis Thompson and Matt Jarvis remain longer term injury absentees.
• Re-live the main lines from the press conference via the window.