First the good news: Dimitri Payet will be training with the first team squad after Boxing Day’s match against Aston Villa.
Now the bad: Nikicia Jelavic could easily lead the line on Boxing Day if nether Andy Carroll – over whom there is a question mark – or Enner Valencia is trusted from the start.
And it appears too that despite the bright forecasts for this weekend Manu Lanzini won’t be available unless Slav is involving himself in a cute guessing game.
He said: “It is good news that Dimitri Payet is ahead of schedule. He should train with us after Villa and is with the fitness coaches now.
“He might be involved in the Liverpool game which would be a big boost for us. Lanzini is progressing and will probably be available for the Southampton game.
It looks like it will be the same squad as against Swansea, but we should have one or two back for Southampton.”
That of course means that in the meantime we are lumbered with the ineffective Jelavic who has taken an all round hammering from pundits and public alike.
However, with Enner fit we can only hope that – should Andy Carroll not make it – the manager will decide to give the Ecuadorian striker a line leading role as it’s impossible to see the Croat performing in any way effectively even against a lacklustre Villa.