Aston Villa boss Dean Smith has confirmed that captain Jack Grealish will be sidelined for at least another couple of weeks with his troublesome shin injury.
The 25-year-old has missed the last seven Premier League games with the issue, and although he was tipped to return against Fulham last time out, he suffered a setback the day before the game.
As Villa prepare to face Liverpool this weekend, we had hoped for positive news on our skipper, but Smith has confirmed that we won’t be seeing him back in action any time soon.
“No, he’s not [fit]. Myself and Jack were quite optimistic to get him back a bit sooner than he probably should and he’s had a setback that will probably put him back a couple of weeks,” he said, as quoted by the club’s official site.
“He was really good in training, but he couldn’t tolerate the loading. It’s a loading injury and we have to de-load him over the next few weeks and get him back from there.
“We know it’s not a long-term injury and he will be back. We all, Jack included, probably pushed him back a little bit too quickly. He wanted to get back, we wanted him to get back and he had a little setback.”
Given his influence on the side and his importance to our hopes of pushing for European qualification, that is a big blow for all concerned as Grealish will now seemingly hope to return at some stage in May.
The England international has bagged seven goals and 12 assists in just 23 appearances so far this season.
Meanwhile, there was some positive news on the injury front from Smith on Friday, as he allayed fears over Wesley’s potential setback, while he’ll have another defender at his disposal this weekend.
“Kortney Hause is fit and he’ll be in the squad,” he added. “Welsey came off in an Under-23s game but it was nothing to worry about and he’s trained ever since. He needs a few more games before he can be added to the squad.”