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West Brom intend to tread carefully over Ahmed Hegazi's fitness

By Matt Maher | West Bromwich Albion | Published:

Albion will take no undue risks with Ahmed Hegazi as they bid to ensure the defender enters the play-offs in the best possible shape.

Ahmed Hegazi has been among Albion's top performers this season. Pic: AMA.

Hegazi missed Monday’s 0-0 draw at Reading with an ankle injury which also forced his withdrawal from last Friday’s 3-2 win over Hull after just 18 minutes.

Though the problem is not thought to be serious, caretaker boss Jimmy Shan will continue to tread carefully over the fitness of a player who has been among the Baggies’ top performers this term.

Shan will seek further advice from the club’s medical staff before deciding whether Hegazi is ready to return for Saturday’s penultimate Championship fixture against Rotherham.

He explained: “It’s a tricky one with Ahmed because it’s a manageable one. He is being rested, we’ll seek further advice from the experts on what needs to be done and when it needs to be done.

“It’s one the medical team have explained to me 100,000 times and I don’t quite understand. He’s got a bit of discomfort and he needs to manipulate something back into place. I’m told it’s not serious, but it’s something we need to have a look at.”

Shan, who has taken 16 points in eight games since replacing Darren Moore in The Hawthorns hotseat, acknowledges he is facing something of a balancing act as he looks to maintain momentum heading into the play-offs, while also ensuring his frontline players remain in top condition.

Jake Livermore was among those rested for both games over the Easter weekend.

Fellow midfielder Stefan Johansen was also left out at the Madejski Stadium and Shan said: “It’s inevitable people will pick up strains and knocks. We’ve done our best to fully utilise our squad.

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“Stefan played in the last game, Jake didn’t, he’s got a bit of soreness but it’s nothing serious at all.

“We had no risk on Monday. If we needed Jake to play on Monday, he’d have played on Monday.

“I knew I was going to start with Sam Field and Rekeem Harper in any case. We rested Jake to make sure he’s ready to charge into the end of the season.”

Matt Maher

By Matt Maher
Football MMPJ - @mjmarr_star

Sports journalist for the Express & Star

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