Beausejour on the mend as internationals return for club duties
Roberto Martinez is hopeful that Jean Beausejour will return to action for Latics sooner rather than later, after picking up what appears to be a torn hamstring against Stoke City last time out.
The Chilean international was withdrawn from international duty this week in light of his injury, but Martinez says the left-sided player is recovering well and expects to see him back on the pitch before long:
“The scan he had after the Stoke game revealed that he had a tear in his hamstring,” said Martinez,“so now he’s in a stage of recovery and we’re assessing how long that will take.
“It’s too early to predict when he’ll be able to return to action, but he’s progressing well and hopefully it won’t be too long.”
James McArthur had been an injury worry at the beginning of the season, but the Gaffer says the Scotland international’s strength of character and a much needed two-week break has done him the world of good:
“James has been through a very demanding start to the season, because after an hour or so on the pitch his back begins to stiffen up and against Chelsea and Stoke he tired towards the end of the game when the tempo was high.
“But he has such a strong mentality which allows him to be available and I think the two-week period we’ve had has helped him with his full recovery.
“Fortunately we have a large squad and the games we play in every competition are so important in building that understanding the players have of the roles required when they take to the pitch.
“All the players have that understanding now and can bring something different to the set-up as well which is a real strength we have.”
With the first international break of the new season over, Martinez reflected upon his players’ involvements around the globe including a landmark appearance for skipper Gary Caldwell for Scotland, unfazed by the 30-year-old’s role as an anchoring midfielder:
“Gary played a real leader’s role for his country against Serbia and picked up his 50th cap in the process, something only 27 players have done for the Scottish national team so that’s a real achievement for him.
“Players are going to go away and train and play to different styles, systems and sometimes play in different position to what they’re used to at club level.
“But these are experienced professionals and they understand how to make that transition from club to country, coming back well able to slip back into the roles and requirements demanded of them by their club.
“Gary will come back full of pride and he’s not the only one who’ll return after a special period.
“Ali Al Habsi has been home to visit his family and see his new-born baby girl for the first time, Antolin Alcaraz was in great form for Paraguay against Argentina in what should have been a man-of-the-match performance.”
Another player who shone on international duty was James McCarthy who made his first start for the Republic of Ireland in their World Cup Qualifier against Kazakhstan, a sign of the 21-year-old’s progression according to Martinez:
“James is ready for these commitments now and to form partnerships on the pitch at international level; he showed a good understanding with Glenn Whelan in the centre midfield, both being very flexible which they had to be in turning round the game against Kazakhstan.
“He showed great composure in his performance and was outstanding on the ball, bringing stability to the team with his partnership with Whelan in the midfield.
“His ability doesn’t surprise us anymore but for his country to see what he is capable of at such a young age will be very pleasing I’m sure.
“He had a difficult start to last season, not able to find continuity because of injuries and setbacks in the previous campaign.
“The work he’s done this summer was fantastic, helped him to relax and helped him to prepare for the new season, starting with so much maturity.
“He is a unique player, with unique character and I’m sure he’ll continue developing into a top, top player at world-class level.”