Swansea City manager Russell Martin has revealed that all three of Olivier Ntcham, Ryan Bennett and Michael Obafemi could be back in contention for their clash with Cardiff City after returning to training.
The Swans take on Cardiff on Sunday lunchtime in the derby with both sides separated by just goal difference, with them both having picked up 11 points from their opening 11 fixtures in the Championship.
Martin’s side have been without both Bennett and Obafemi for their last four Championship games, with the pair picking up knocks that have seen them not feature for Swansea since their 3-3 draw with Luton Town last month.
Ntcham, meanwhile, missed out on Swansea’s goalless draw at Derby County before the international break. That came with the late summer arrival suffering a hamstring injury during the Swans’ 3-1 defeat at Fulham in their previous fixture.
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Speaking to Swansea’s official club website ahead of the Cardiff clash, Martin revealed that all three of Ntcham, Bennett and Obafemi have now returned to training and they are all now in contention to feature in the crucial derby clash.
He said: “The international week is a big period for us because it allows us to work on a lot of different things.
“It gave a few players the chance to recover from knocks and niggles, while it was also an opportunity for us to get Michael Obafemi, Olivier Ntcham and Ryan Bennett back on the training pitch.
“Seeing them back in training is massive for us. They give us so much more strength. They are three important players who were doing well before their injuries.
“Benno is someone the fans will have seen a lot of since he arrived here, while they’ve witness Oli’s quality already.
“Mike is a player who has shown little glimpses of his talent, but he will bring a lot more. He has qualities that not many players in our squad have, so he’ll make a real difference for us.”
This is a huge potential boost for Swansea and it comes at the perfect time with them set to take on Cardiff in a really crucial derby clash between the two sides at this stage in the campaign.
Nthcam had been delivering some strong early performances for the Swans since arriving on a free transfer in the summer, but his injury against Fulham meant that he was unable to affect things for the Swans as they were held to a frustrating draw by Derby last time out. What a return it would be if he could make an impact in a win against Cardiff.
Bennett, meanwhile, is a vital player for the Swans and his experience might be important against Cardiff because they are likely to give it their all to get something out of the game after their recent form.
Obafemi needs to start hitting the ground running for Swansea now in front of goal on his return to action because the Swans are in need of adding more goals at the top end of the pitch.