TEAM NEWS: Onel Hernandez set for Norwich City return against Stoke City
Daniel Farke confirmed Onel Hernandez is fit for duty against Stoke City this weekend after a full recovery from his hernia operation.
Hernandez is poised for a place on the substitutes’ bench at Carrow Road and Farke is more than willing to unleash the flying wide player against the Potters after his recent surgery.
The City head coach has no fresh injury worries following the midweek 1-1 Championship draw at Derby County. Ben Marshall will again be on development duty for the Under-23s, who travel to Leicester City on Friday in the Premier League Cup.
Farke, speaking at Colney, confirmed Ivo Pinto is in the squad mix following his omission at Pride Park.
“That was a tough call. He missed a lot of pre-season and then he picked up another injury with his hamstring,” said Farke. “That put him out for 12 days. He has two appearances. One for the Under-23s and at Wycombe. He is back in a good shape but in the league we had several good appearances from Max Aarons or even Jamal Lewis on the other wing. You can also add Louis Thompson and Ben Godfrey to that area as options.
“There is a little bit the homegrown rule as well. When you are not in the line up it is difficult to be involved in the squad but Ivo is an important part of our group.
“It is important for Ben he is back in training after losing weight through illness. It is a bit tricky because we don’t have much time on the training pitch because it is recreation after a game or preparing for the next one. So he has to train with the 23s a little bit but from day to day he is improving.
“There is not so much need to change the squad so we are thinking about giving him an appearance for the 23s (on Friday).
“Onel was able to train the last four days with us. He was not involved at Derby but I am thinking about calling him to the squad. He is not ready for 90 minutes but with his speed and ability to find solutions one-versus-one he is always a threat who can do maybe 30 minutes or whatever.
“It could be he is on the bench and fit enough to start again after the international break.”
Farke will weigh up changes after naming an unchanged league line up for the fifth game in a row at Derby followed by a gruelling midweek trip home.
“We had a long journey with road works as well. We got to Colney about 3am in the morning (on Thursday),” he said. “So it is probably 4am before they are in bed and on Thursday they were very tired. We’ll see. We have Friday and Saturday morning. They are young lads, they will be okay.
“It is nearly the same for each and every club at present. We’ll have to make some late decisions and decide who needs a rest. In general no new injuries. For that, I am also confident for Stoke.”
Grant Hanley, Kenny McLean, Carlton Morris and Matt Jarvis remain longer term absentees.
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