Birmingham City head coach Pep Clotet has revealed that defensive duo Marc Roberts and Jake Clarke-Salter are both making good progress towards returning from injury.
Roberts has been an important player for Birmingham this season, but the centre-back has missed the last seven matches for the Blues, after suffering an ankle injury during the 1-1 draw with Millwall at the end of November.
Clarke-Salter, who is on loan at Birmingham from Chelsea, has missed the last six games for the Blues, after suffering a dislocated shoulder in the 3-2 win at Reading at the start of December.
The victory at the Madejski Stadium was the last time Birmingham have won a game. The Blues have lost five of their six matches since then and this run has seen them fall from within touching distance of the top six to worryingly close to the bottom three.
The Blues have also conceded 19 goals in that time, which could be down to the fact at they have lost their two first-choice central defenders.
However, Clotet has revealed that the defensive duo are both making good progress towards returning to action. Clarke-Salter has returned to training, with Roberts set to return next week.
The Blues boss also revealed that defensive midfielder Maikel Kieftenbeld is also close to returning to training, after spending the last eight months on the sidelines with knee ligament damage.
He told the Birmingham Mail: “Jake Clarke-Salter is already training this week and is getting closer which would be good news for us. Marc Roberts I am expecting him to train next week as well as Maikel Kieftenbeld.”
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This is very good news for Birmingham. Roberts has been extremely important player for the Blues so far this season and Clarke-Salter was just starting to get a run of matches in the team.
They’ve been a big miss for the Blues over the last few matches, so it’ll be a major boost for Clotet when they’re able to return to action – however long that may be.
Birmingham have really struggled over the last few matches and have conceded way too many goals. If results don’t improve soon, they’re in danger of being dragged into a relegation battle, so the sooner Roberts and Clarke-Salter are back, the better.
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