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Onel Hernandez injury blow for Bluebirds’ visit

PUBLISHED: 14:52 13 April 2018 | UPDATED: 19:30 13 April 2018

Onel Hernandez has not featured since March 17 with a hamstring injury. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Onel Hernandez has not featured since March 17 with a hamstring injury. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Onel Hernandez is still ruled out with a hamstring injury for Norwich City’s Championship clash against Cardiff City.

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Daniel Farke confirmed at his pre-match press call on Friday afternoon the flyer is still not in the mix after a setback in his injury return from the hamstring problem that has sidelined him since March 17.

Marley Watkins and Marco Stiepermann are both available and Stiepermann could get a run out at development level in Sunday’s scheduled game against Wolves.

“Onel has no chance for Saturday,” said Farke. “He’s just doing individual work at the moment.

“We thought he’d be out for two weeks but he had a setback in rehab, and now it seems he’ll be back in team training in the middle of next week.

“But I’m careful in my prediction after his last setback.

“It was important to give Alex Tettey a rest as he wasn’t ready for the last game.

“He’s available. Dennis Srbeny is in a better situation now, as he had to be substituted against Villa with cramps. It was good for Jamal Lewis and Timm Klose to play only a half too, as that has helped them recover.

“Marley is back in team training, and so is Marco. They are both available, but with four points out of the last two games there aren’t so many reasons to change the squad. The lads in recent games have been good.”

Moritz Leitner is pushing for a start against Cardiff after his recent return from a hamstring injury.

“The plan was to play him for 30 minutes in the last game (against Sunderland) but we had to change our tactics during the match,” said Farke. “I wanted to have Dennis on the pitch. So maybe he’s not ready for the full 90 minutes but he could start a game.

“Ivo (Pinto) and Mario (Vrancic) have played each and every minute recently so I’ve been thinking of giving them a rest recently as it’s a big load for them, especially after a long season. This is the fifth game in 14 days.

“I don’t want to take too much risk with injury with Ivo and Mario. It’ll be a pretty late decision on both of them. Ivo was away for six weeks and I was thinking of giving him a rest in the recent games but with the injuries we had in central midfield Harrison Reed had to play in that area.

“I’m thinking about whether it is smart to start with one or both of them. It is not just the physical but the mental.”

Matt Jarvis is another who potentially may feature on Sunday alongside Stiepermann against his old club as he steps up his latest fitness comeback.

“That is the plan for Matt. To give him a chance on Sunday,” said Farke. “Also the same with Marco. He needs some minutes and could be involved.”

Tom Trybull (ankle/knee) and Louis Thompson (Achilles) remain longer term absentees.

• Re-live the main lines from the press conference in the blog above

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