Fer­nan­dez back, but un­likely to faceWBA

Western Mail - - SPORT -

FED­ERICO Fer­nan­dez looks un­likely to fea­ture in Swansea City’s Lib­erty Sta­dium meet­ing with West Brom af­ter re­turn­ing to train­ing fol­low­ing the death of his fa­ther.

The 28-year-old (pic­tured) missed the games against Bournemouth, Chelsea and Stoke af­ter his dad passed away the night be­fore the clash with the Cher­ries.

He headed back to Ar­gentina on the Satur­day morn­ing and was on com­pas­sion­ate leave for just over a week be­fore re­port­ing for duty at Fair­wood on Mon­day.

The cen­tre-half, who has skip­pered the Swans for the ma­jor­ity of the sea­son, played for the club’s un­der-23 side against Colch­ester United Re­serves last night.

But head coach Cle­ment is not plan­ning to rush the former Napoli man back into his start­ing line-up for the meet­ing with the Bag­gies.

When asked if Fer­nan­dez was in his plans for the Pre­mier League fix­ture, Cle­ment said: “More than likely, no.

“But he’s not go­ing to play 90 min­utes for the un­der-23s, it will be more like 60.

“If there are any is­sues with the other group go­ing into the week­end then we may have to use him. The plan is think­ing ahead to Manch­ester City.”

But Cle­ment was pleased to have Fer­nan­dez back in his squad ahead of ahead of a tricky run of fix­tures that in­clude games against Manch­ester City, Ever­ton and Liver­pool.

“Fed­erico has re­joined train­ing. He was back in on Mon­day. He is go­ing to get some min­utes for the un­der-23s which will good in get­ting him back up to match pace as if he wasn’t go­ing to start on Satur­day that would be three weeks with­out a game,” added Cle­ment. “So the plan for him is to very much fo­cus on prepa­ra­tions for Manch­ester City in mid­week. “He is OK, it has been a dif­fi­cult time for him. I be­lieve his fa­ther had strug­gled with ill­ness over the last cou­ple of years. So, al­though it was very sad news, I don’t think it was to­tally a shock. “It’s good to have him back, when you lose some­one close to you it is a very dif­fi­cult pe­riod but he seems in de­cent spir­its and is happy to be back.”

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