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TEAM NEWS: QPR v CITY

18 November 2016

The latest squad news ahead of Saturday

NORWICH City are set to remain without the services of right-back Ivo Pinto for Saturday's trip to Queens Park Rangers, with the defender still sidelined by a groin injury.

Pinto has been out of action since pulling up in the warm-up ahead of the Canaries' meeting with Preston, and Alex Neil told Norwich City TV on Friday: "He won't be available for the weekend, no.

"He's making good progress but still isn't at the stage where he would be available. It's day-by-day for us, and depending on upping his workload will determine how he goes from here."

Fellow full-back Martin Olsson was withdrawn from the Sweden squad for the recent international break, but City's boss delivered more positive news on that front.

"It was precautionary from us as we wanted to make sure Martin had the best chance of being available for this game," he explained.

"We've been patching him up for the last couple of games, which hasn't been ideal. Hopefully we're over the worst of it."

Two players who did travel with their respective nations were Michael McGovern and Youssouf Mulumbu, with the latter still recovering from a foot problem.

McGovern featured for Northern Ireland in their 4-0 World Cup qualifying win over Azerbaijan, before returning to Carrow Road for treatment prior to his nation's friendly meeting with Croatia.

Meanwhile, Mulumbu wasn't involved as DR Congo came from behind to beat Guinea as they continued their quest to reach the 2018 finals in Russia.

"Michael is a similar scenario to Martin, where we've been patching him up," outlined Neil.

"We wanted to get him back in as soon as possible, and to get him as physically fit as we can. With Youssouf, he's been training but has only really done a couple of days.

"It will be a bit early for him, but he's a naturally fit lad so hopefully we can get him back involved soon."

The Canaries are also without Jonny Howson, with the midfielder remaining sidelined for the foreseeable future with an ankle injury.

Long-term absentee Matt Jarvis is continuing to make progress after undergoing a knee operation in the summer, while Neil hopes Louis Thompson will be available despite 'carrying a knock'.

Steven Whittaker (stomach) saw further match action on Wednesday evening; playing 77 minutes as City's Development Squad defeated Celtic in the Premier League International Cup at Carrow Road.

That bolsters City's right-back options, with midfielder Alex Tettey also set to return to the matchday squad having served a one-match suspension after collecting five yellow cards.  
  


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