Norwich City boss Chris Hughton expects Michael Turner and Sebastien Bassong to be ready for action soon
- Credit: Archant
Norwich City boss Chris Hughton is confident both first choice centre-backs Michael Turner and Sebastien Bassong will be fit for the Canaries' Premier League kick-off.
The key duo remained in the UK to continue their rehab after surgery over the summer on shoulder and knee injuries respectively. Bassong was crowned player-of-the-year in his debut season whilst Turner forged a dominant partnership with the Cameroon international.
City wrap up their USA tour in the early hours of Thursday morning (BST) when they play Portland Timbers and Hughton insists it was the right call to leave Turner and Bassong behind. Hughton also revealed Andrew Surman's early pre-season outings at left-back are purely to cover the defensive shortfall in Norwich's 25-man travelling party.
'It is simply a case we have 25 players with us, three of whom are goalkeepers, and it is trying to manoeuvre the squad the best way we can,' he said. 'He started the Sacramento game their and game on for Javi (Garrido) against San Jose because at this moment we knew Martin (Olsson) was a touch behind the rest of the squad. He probably won't be involved against Portland either. We know we can't play Javi in all the games so we are a touch light defensively with Seb and Michael Turner not with us.
'They are just rehabbing at home and there is nothing to be concerned about. Michael is probably a touch in front of Seb in that respect, but they have both made very good recoveries. Seb had a small op on his knee just after the season finished and Michael had an operation on his shoulder. I expect them both to be available later on in pre-season.'
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Bradley Johnson has travelled but is unlikely to play any part in the club's final tour match against MLS title contenders Portland after suffering a knee scare in training.
'He is okay,' said Hughton. 'There was a concern because he went over on his knee in training but the good news is we had it scanned and there is no damage.
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'All he has done has give the knee a bit of a jolt and he won't be involved for the final game.
'If this is going to be our toughest test out here then that is how we wanted it and it is a good stadium to go and play in as well. San Jose looked sharp the other day and I expect the same. That was the difference. Would we on a good day have more quality than these sides then, yes, we would but San Jose looked very, very sharp and that was probably the main factor.'
Hughton confirmed City's planning for fresh reinforcements in the transfer window continues despite their Stateside trip.
'We are where we were a few days ago. We are still trying and doing as much diligence as we can but at this stage no different to what we said before the weekend,' he said. 'We are trying as hard as we can to make the squad as strong as we can. We hope to have more additions before the window.'