Steve McClaren has stretched anybody’s belief to the limits with comments about goalkeeper Rob Elliot on Tuesday afternoon.
With Karl Darlow and now Tim Krul injured, Elliot is nailed on to start against Norwich City on Sunday, with only 18 year old rookie Freddie Woodman as competition.
Speaking to the official club website, Steve McClaren said:
“I have been impressed by Rob (Elliot) from day one when I came into the Club.
“He is very vocal in the dressing room, is a senior player with good experience and is not afraid to say things. That is vital, and this situation gives Rob an opportunity to show what he can do.”
I think a more realistic guess would be that Steve McClaren looked into the mirror on Saturday night as said to himself:
‘I have been impressed by Rob Elliot from the second I heard Tim Krul was knackered!’
Steve McClaren didn’t even take Rob Elliot to America for the pre-season tour, instead taking Freddie Woodman along with Krul and Darlow.
Understandably Steve McClaren is gutted about the injury to Tim Krul and said:
“It’s a bitter blow for Tim and for us…I spoke to him on the morning of the game and he wasn’t playing. Selfishly, I thought that was good, because then he would be fit for us. Then I got the news, the severity of the injury and how he did it, it is a massive blow.
“Tim is a big part of us, he is a big player, a leader in the dressing room, his goal was to establish himself in the Dutch side going forward.
“We will miss him for the rest of the season and he loses seven or eight months of his career, it is going to be a very difficult time for him but Tim is strong, single-minded and he will come back from this injury.
“I’ve seen plenty of players go through this and come back just as strong, so we have no worries or concerns about what Tim will go through. The treatment and rehab he will get from us will be first class.”