In early team news from Norwich City, Leeds United fans’ hopes of maintaining their increasingly slim play-off hopes may have taken a boost in news that the Canaries will be missing five for today’s trip to Elland Road.
Alongside absentees Matt Jarvis and Louis Thompson, Michael McGovern has been granted compassionate leave by the club after the sad passing of his mother. But it is news that the Canaries will be missing key midfield duo Alex Tettey and Wes Hoolahan that will bolster Whites fans’ dreams of three points at Elland Road.
The news that will most interest Leeds fans is that 34-year-old Irish international Wes Hoolahan is missing after Alan Irvine told Norwich TV, quoted on the club’s website, that the experienced Irishman “has a hip injury.”
Hoolahan has been a definite threat for the Canaries this season, and a consistent thorn in the side of oppoenents. He has scored five goals this season, as well as providing a team-leading nine assists.
Norwich will still be able to put out a very strong side at Elland Road in a game where a win for the visitors would hammer the final, effective nail in Leeds’ slender play-off hopes. They will be led by 25-goal strike duo Cameron Jerome (16 goals) and Portuguese forward Nélson Oliveira (nine goals), these two supported by a goal-scoring and providing midfield – one that can overcome the absence of Wes Hoolahan.
Former Leeds favourite Johnny Howson (six goals and five assists) and Scot Graham Dorrans (six goals and one assist) sit deeper in what is a potent five-man midfield. Ahead of these two, in their last game vs Brighton, were Stephen Naismith (four), Alex Pritchard (five) and Josh Murphy (three) – the trio complementing what is a 24-goal midfield unit.
Norwich will be strong opposition for Leeds United in front of what will be a raucous, and loud, Elland Road crowd who will be hoping beyond hope that their side can snatch three points, whilst having fingers crossed that Fulham drop points against Brentford.