James Collins and Michail Antonio could both sit out West Ham United’s Premier League trip to Everton on Wednesday night.
Manager David Moyes urged caution over the duo in his pre-match press conference, whilst also confirming that Mexican striker Javier Hernandez has not yet returned to training following a hamstring strain picked up on international duty.
“Chicharito has not trained today, so he’s going to be a few days or a bit longer, but we want him back fit because we have so many games coming up,” the Scot is quoted as saying by the club’s official website.
“It’s the same for James Collins and even Michail Antonio, in that we have to be really careful because our squad isn’t the biggest.
“It’s important to get these boys fit and ready to play.”
Whilst Moyes did not rule out Collins and Antonio being involved, his comments seem to suggest that they will not feature unless he is fully confident over their fitness.
That could mean that the former Manchester United boss fields the same line-up that started Friday’s 1-1 draw against Leicester City.
Marko Arnautovic suffered a slight knee problem in the second half of that fixture but Moyes will be hoping to have him available following an all-action display at the London Stadium.
Elsewhere, centre-half Jose Fonte is sidelined until the new year with a foot injury, whilst right-back Sam Byram has a thigh issue but could be back in contention over the coming weeks.
After picking up the first point of the new boss’ tenure against the Foxes, West Ham now need to start recording wins to improve on their current league standing of 18th and will be aiming to do so against Moyes’ former employers on Wednesday.
The 54-year-old spent 11 years in charge of the Toffees from 2002 through to 2013, but finds them in dire straits at present, sitting 16th and without a permanent manager in place since the dismissal of Ronald Koeman last month.
A win could lift the Hammers as high as 15th and would drag their opponents deeper into the relegation battle.