MOHAMMED Salisu could finally make his long-awaited Saints debut against Wolves on Thursday. The centre-back has endured wretched luck with health and injury problems since completing his £10.9million transfer from Real Valladolid last summer. Salisu featured as an unused substitute on six occasions during December before suffering another setback, which he returned from to take his place back in the matchday squad for Saturday’s trip to Newcastle United. The 21-year-old again did not make it off the bench at St James’ Park, but boss Ralph Hasenhuttl said the Ghanaian is ready to go at Molineux. Asked if this is the fittest Salisu has been since he arrived at Saints,
Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “This is the fittest he was ever so far, yes. He will be available to start.”
Salisu had been pencilled in to make his debut against Shrewsbury in the FA Cup last month, only for injury to strike a few days before the contest. But that bow in a Saints shirt could finally come in the same competition at Molineux.
Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “This was the plan (to play against Shrewsbury), it didn’t work the first time. Let’s have a look if it works now.”
Like Salisu, Kyle Walker-Peters is also ready to return from injury against Wolves. Asked how many training sessions the pair have had with the first team since coming back to fitness,
Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “Three or four so far I think and there are a few tough (sessions) also included. That gives them the feeling that everything is okay and that they can go one hundred per cent and this is important.”
Saints are still set to be without six players for the trip to Molineux. Will Smallbone and Michael Obafemi are long-term absentees, while Ibrahima Diallo is also ruled out through injury. Asked for an update on fellow injured duo Stuart Armstrong and Theo Walcott,
Ralph Hasenhuttl revealed: “Stuey, not so long out. Theo, there is a tendon involved so it is quite long.”
Takumi Minamino is unavailable due to being cup-tied after featuring in the earlier rounds of the competition for parent club Liverpool.
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