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Dani Parejo likely out for several weeks

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Defender took a knock against Valencia

Villarreal CF v Valencia CF - La Liga Santander Photo by Manuel Queimadelos/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Dani Parejo injured his left leg against Valencia. While the official report stated that his recovery time is undetermined, and rests largely on the progress he individually makes, journalist Javi Mata suggests he’ll have four weeks off.

Parejo was immense against Valencia, not only scoring the winning goal but also having 116 touches of the ball in the center of the park. No other midfielder we have can handle that kind of workload. With Pervis Estupinan and Gerard Moreno also injured, it could be argued that three of our top five players are currently out, and four starters overall (if we include Ruben as the first choice RB).

I think the schedule without Parejo is largely survivable. If we assume four weeks (hoping he’s back sooner) that takes us through Sivasspor, Cadiz, Qarabag, Valladolid, Maccabi, and Getafe, with the match with Real Madrid being just over a month away. We are more talented than all of those teams other than perhaps Getafe and certainly Madrid with or without Parejo.

I would expect that for the time being we’ll be returning to the 442. Without Parejo as a fulcrum between defense and attack, we will probably see a lot of Coquelin and Iborra in a double pivot with Coquelin’s tendency to roam forward hopefully paying dividends. Given that Emery played with Kubo as part of a top two significantly during preseason, in practice this may look more like a 4411. I have my concerns about our right flank defensively in such a setup, but it’s probably our best option.

Heal up soon Dani!