Eddie Howe has confirmed that Jonjo Shelvey will be missing for up to TWO months with a calf injury, but it sounds like Callum Wilson (illness) should be fit for Leeds after narrowly missing out on yesterday’s game.
Speaking about our 3-0 win at Leicester, the boss praised our ability to ‘minimise their threat’ and keep another clean sheet in amongst that flurry of first half goals, stating how ‘important’ that is for the team.
He also praised the way his players “attacked” the game, feeling our fast start and positive mentality from the off was vital in sealing our sixth straight league win.
Supporters at the game started singing songs about winning the league after the third goal, but the 45-year-old was quick to remind everyone that the squad will remain focused and ‘not look too far ahead’.
While Callum Wilson is expected to be fine for the Leeds game on New Years Eve, it’s another cruel blow for Shelvey, who has barely kicked a ball this season after missing the first few months with a hamstring injury.
Here’s everything the boss had to say after the game, starting with the bad news on the injury front…
Eddie Howe on Jonjo Shelvey’s latest setback:
“It looks like six to eight weeks, unfortunately, for Jonjo Shelvey.
“I think he felt something (with his calf) in the game against Vallecano.
.“We hoped that it wasn’t serious. He resumed training and felt OK. A couple of days later he felt it again, so he went for a scan.
“It is enough to keep him out for that length of time (six to eight weeks). It is really tough for him.
“He worked incredibly hard to be fit for pre-season and to be ready for the rigours he faced, the fact that the team were playing a certain way. He wanted to try and be part of that.
“When he picked up his hamstring injury, we were really disappointed for him. I saw him work so hard to get back from that hamstring injury and he came back slightly ahead of schedule, due to the work he put in.
“Now he’s going to be out again, a big blow for him…and for us.”
Eddie Howe on Wilson’s absence and when he knew the striker wouldn’t be fit for Leicester:
“Probably yesterday (Sunday) I would say. We were hopeful he’d recover from the illness that he has had.
“He was in at the training ground a couple of days ago (on Friday and then Saturday) and we felt he would be OK, even though he was slightly run down.
“I know Callum very, very well obviously. He would only rule himself out of a game if he knew he couldn’t do the team justice, in terms of what he needed to do physically.
“We hope he recovers quickly.”
On the performance, Howe said: “To start in the manner we did was hugely important. Full credit to the players for how they’ve attacked today’s game.
“Very, very pleased with the first-half performance, and then the general mentality of the group. Again, very, very good after the break.”
On title-winning songs, Howe added: “I just think the only thing we need to be mindful of internally is we just have to focus on what we can control, which is our own thoughts and actions, and how we train and prepare, and just not look too far ahead or listen to too much news media, and just focus on our training.
“This is the toughest league in the world for a reason, and our opposition will no doubt be watching us and preparing for us.”