Jones updates on Armstrong and Bella-Kotchap injuries

By SFC Media time Sat 07 Jan Men's First team
Photo by Matt Watson | Nathan Jones

Nathan Jones gave an injury update on some of his players, including Stuart Armstrong and Armel Bella-Kotchap, following the FA Cup win at Crystal Palace.

The Southampton manager was without a number of players for the third-round tie, as well as having others in his matchday squad whose workload could only be limited, but Saints still found a way to earn a 2-1 victory and progress into the next stage of the competition.

After the match, Jones gave an update on Armstrong and Bella-Kotchap, who were both absent from the squad.

He said: "Both are injured. In fairness to Stuart Armstrong he's only been able to do 15 to 20 minutes, and I wanted to say that because it adds to fans' frustrations when they don't see him start or don't see him play 45 minutes.

"He's been injured and he's been taking tablets to get out there and give us ten, 15 minutes at a time, but that's all we can get out of him. Now, with the two cup games, we've taken the decision to put him out of the firing line so he can rest, but he's been playing through the pain barrier, so we haven't been able to play him.

"Then Armel obviously picked up a slight knee injury [against Nottingham Forest], which again we're assessing and we'll have more news on later."

Jones also had some players on his bench who he knew he would not be able to make full use of, as they were either carrying knocks or still being built up after returning from injury.

"We've picked up a few injuries, a few have been playing through it," he said. "Roméo [Lavia], to go again today after coming back from injury and being a young player, we had to take him out of the firing line and there were one or two like that. Moi [Elyounoussi] has been fantastic for me and again played through injury, so it shows real character there, but we just have to be sensible with certain things. But we showed today we've got a group who can work hard and win a football game."

Jones also gave an update on the fitness of new signing Mislav Oršić, who joined the club on Friday in a transfer from Dinamo Zagreb.

"Again, we just have to be careful because he's played in the World Cup all the way to the third-place play-off match, then he's had a bit of time off, so we've got to build him up, otherwise if we try to push him in too quickly he'll pick up an injury and then we won't have him for a period of time, so it's all about managing it," said Jones.

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