From the Treatment Room

Head of Medical and Sports Science Stijn Vandenbroucke with his latest update – in association with Spire Roding Hospital...

Hello everyone,

We have had a memorable few days with our important FA Cup win over Blackburn on Sunday and it was great to see the players come away with such an emphatic victory.

It was also pleasing to see Manuel Lanzini back in action.

He is training this week with the first-team squad and will be available for selection for the Sunderland game on Saturday.

We also have positive news with the return of three key players to first-team training this week.

Diafra Sakho, Winston Reid and Andy Carroll are all back in training and will now spend the next few days building up their fitness.

Diafra has obviously been out for three months and will need a bit more time, while Andy and Winston will hope to play some part in the games that we have got coming up next week.

The planned integration of these players back into the games is very important as they enter the final stages of their rehab/training/playing.

The difficult exercise is that the players and staff don't get carried away in the last phase, the return to play phase.

We try to integrate each player that returns from injury into games, minimising the risk of a re-injury but maximise the team performance.

But I am confident that Sakho, Reid and Carroll will all play their part in a busy schedule for the club when we face Sunderland, Tottenham and Everton in the space of a week.

Depending on injuries we will have to see game-by-game who is available and take it from there.

James Tomkins and Joey O'Brien are both working on their rehab and it will be a couple more weeks before they can start training again.

Enner Valencia has seen a specialist and is doing individual training at the moment. We will know in the next few days if he has a part to play in the three games that we face next week.

Stijn Vandenbroucke

Head of Medical and Sports Science