Michael Will Be Motoring

Trevor Brooking is backing Michael Carrick to get his season really up and running on a regular basis soon.

Trevor took the gamble of starting Michael at Derby even though he had been coming back from injury and had had virtually no full training.

His presence in midfield was a boost, although he didn't play the full 90 minutes, and Trevor says:

"He came through all right; obviously his match fitness is not there but you can only get that from playing games.

"Sometimes you can start and come off later or sometimes you can come on for half an hour.

"I think Michael is happier starting and can pick up the game from the off."

It was variously reported in Sunday newspapers that the Derby game was Michael's first of the season, which it wasn't, and that he sustained a toe injury in training - which he didn't.

Trevor explains:

"The only slight minus was that he got a slightly mangled big toe in a tackle in the second half.

"We were a bit worried that there might be a crack in it, but it is just scraped and it is very black and blue - and sore.

"That stopped him being able to do too much in the week but we have been working on that and still hope he has a reasonable chance of making the games coming up.

"It is a shame because naturally you want him to train every day to work up to that match fitness because there is another flurry of games ahead where hopefully he will work towards the level we know he can reach."