Matty James

Shakespeare: James Out For Four To Six Weeks

Prior to Saturday’s Premier League encounter with Liverpool at King Power Stadium, Craig Shakespeare says Leicester City midfielder Matty James could be out for up to six weeks with an Achilles problem.
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- Craig Shakespeare provided an update on the fitness of seven Leicester City stars during his pre-Liverpool press conference
- The Foxes manager expects Matty James to be out for four to six weeks with an Achilles injury
- Christian Fuchs has recovered from his eye problem, while Jamie Vardy will be assessed on Saturday morning

James sustained the injury against Chelsea earlier this month and consequently missed City’s fixtures against Huddersfield Town and Liverpool.

While disappointed to see the No.22 out of action, Shakespeare believes his past injury experiences have made him a stronger person.

“Unfortunately, Matty James will be out for around four to six weeks,” the City manager revealed. “He’s got an Achilles strain and his foot is in a boot.

“I’m gutted for Matty as an individual because of the timing of it. He’s worked his way back but it’s something he can deal with mentally as it’s short term rather than long term.

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Matty James
Matty James

James trains at Belvoir Drive.

“I know what Matty has been through. He’s at that stage where he wants to do well and train and doesn’t want to sit out training. I have to say, for the last 18 months, including the Barnsley loan, he hasn’t missed a day’s training.

“He picked this up against Chelsea and carried on. Maybe if he’d have come off, he might have protected it a bit more, but that’s the nature and the character of the player.”

A positive ahead of the game for the City boss is that Christian Fuchs is available for selection after recovering from a ‘freak’ injury to his eye picked up in training.

“Christian Fuchs is fine and has got the all clear form the specialist,” said the Foxes boss. “He’s trained all week and had no ill effects. He’s clear to play. He’s in my thoughts and he’s been training fine.”

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Christian Fuchs
Christian Fuchs

Fuchs trains at Belvoir Drive.

Meanwhile, Jamie Vardy, who has scored five goals in his last three appearances against Liverpool, will be assessed ahead of the game after coming off against Huddersfield with a tight groin.

Shakespeare continued: “Jamie Vardy has trained this morning so hopefully there will be no reaction.

“If there’s no reaction, we’ll see how he is in the morning and if he’s ready to be involved. He looked okay in training – we’ve had to take it easy on him as part of the week.

“He was really keen to get out there today and we need him to continue that scoring run against Liverpool.”

While Robert Huth remains unavailable due to his ankle injury, Shakespeare was pleased to report an improvement in the fitness of both Vicente Iborra and Kelechi Iheanacho.

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Robert Huth
Robert Huth

Robert Huth played against West Ham U23s on Monday.

“Robert Huth won’t be ready,” added Shakespeare. “It seems with Robert at the moment that we take one step forward and a step back as well. Unfortunately, with Robert, he’s not quite there to progress, so we’ll take it steady with him.

“We’ve got some of the other players back. We saw Vicente Iborra on Tuesday night, who managed to play the 90 minutes and he’ll benefit from that.

“Kelechi Iheanacho is looking a lot fitter after 48 hours in terms of where he was and getting his conditioning right. We’re slowly getting to a fully-competitive squad.”

Finally, Leonardo Ulloa has returned to training after being withdrawn due to suffering a spell of dizziness against Liverpool on Tuesday night, confirmed the Leicester manager.

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Leonardo Ulloa
Leonardo Ulloa

Leo Ulloa holds off John Lundstram at Bramall Lane.

Shakespeare added: “I watched it back (Ulloa’s injury) a few times and it was a strange one. It’s down to the physio’s discretion. It was more dizziness from that in terms of the way he headed the ball.

“He didn’t train on Wednesday, but he did train on Thursday and he’s been fine since. He wasn’t concussed and wasn’t out, which is important to stress. It was just a bit of dizziness and we had to make a quick decision, which we did.

“Maybe if we had given him another five minutes, he’d have been fine to carry on, but I felt like the decision needed to be made and that’s why we brought Shinji [Okazaki] on.”

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