Petrov may be forced to wait for comeback
By Villa reporter
Thursday 06 Aug 2009 21:52:00
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Stiliyan Petrov looks like having to wait for his comeback from a shoulder injury – but only until Villa’s Premier League opener.

Boss Martin O’Neill is unsure about risking him in the club’s prestige pre-season friendly against Fiorentina on Saturday. But Curtis Davies is fit to appear – and Wilfred Bouma is doing well in his battle to return after a long-term problem.

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Villa say Davies will be fit to face the Italians but Luke Young will miss out due to a thigh problem.

O'Neill has yet to make a decision on risking Petrov after he returned to training.

Bouma - a long-term injury casualty - could return to full training before the end of the month, said Villa’s website.

O’Neill said: ‘Luke is feeling a great deal better. He is obviously frustrated because he has had no pre-season games whatsoever. That's a blow.

’But I think he might start proper work again - building up - next week and hopefully he'll get a couple of decent sessions under his belt if everything goes well.

’I said that about a fortnight ago when he was going very well indeed and then he felt sore again after working exceptionally hard on one of the days out in Spain. I have fingers crossed. But Fiorentina will come too soon.

’Stiliyan is doing very well. He played a little bit of football today. I am not sure about Fiorentina on Saturday. He was wearing a shoulder protection in training. But we will see how he is.

’I am not sure about the weekend game yet. But at least he is in better shape than in a week ago - in terms of starting against Wigan.’

’Curtis has come through everything fine. It's one of those we will have to monitor.

He's happy to continue but as importantly, the doctor thinks its fine for him to continue.

"Wilfred is fine. It's a wee bit slow again. We are hoping he may be able to join in with us fully towards the end of the month. That would be encouraging.

"But it's been a laborious progress. He has had a few set-backs along the way so I wouldn't want to be putting any time frame on it. He is definitely getting stronger though."

MON has also confirmed James Milner, Gabby Agbonlahor and Craig Gardner will all start against Fiorentina..’

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