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Injuries Not Making This Easier

The reports have come in, and Senna strained his left hamstring. The doctors have determined that he will be out seven to ten days, which includes matches against Tenerife, Lazio, and probably Sevilla. The most likely match to see him back in action would be the 11/10 return leg against Puertollano, but after that Villarreal are looking at a ten-day international break, so Valverde might want to give him the full time to recover. This could present another problematic international scenario with Senna. Last time he was injured, he came back early to play for the national side, reinjured himself, and missed a couple more weeks. Villarreal cannot afford to lose players like Senna on an extended basis, and so hopefully the management can assist in preventing Senna's departure to meaningless international matches.

For the upcoming match against Tenerife, Villarreal will also be without Santi Cazorla and Fabricio Fuentes. We are still waiting to hear whether Diego Godin and Ariel Ibagaza will be available.

UPDATE: This weekend's Betis-Villarreal B match has been postponed, as up to 13 Betis players are suffering from the swine flu. No makeup date has been set.

Hopefully Valverde utilizes the B team squad to cover for some of the injured players. For example, Kiko for Fuentes/Godin, Matilla and/or Marcos Gullon for Senna/Cazorla/Ibagaza, and even Marco Ruben for the suspended Nilmar. Good timing, I hope.