Unai Emery issues triple Aston Villa injury update after Man City defeat

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Fitness updates from Unai Emery for Emiliano Martinez, Ollie Watkins and Nicolo Zaniolo after Man City 4-1 Aston Villa.

Ollie Watkins remains a doubt for Aston Villa’s hosting of Brentford on Saturday but Emiliano Martinez and Nicolo Zaniolo should be available for selection, Unai Emery has confirmed.

Villa were forced into a late change to their lineup before the 4-1 thrashing at Manchester City on Wednesday night, with an ill-stricken Emiliano Martinez replaced by Robin Olsen. Zaniolo then went off holding his upper leg during the second half, prompting some concern.

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“Ollie Watkins, tomorrow we will check him and if he’s getting better for Saturday,” Emery began in the Etihad Stadium press room. Then, speaking of Zaniolo, the head coach said: “I think it’s not very important. He could be better tomorrow and for Saturday hopefully he’ll be available to play.”

Director of Football Operations Damian Vidagany assured at the end of the press conference that Zaniolo’s issue was merely a knock, caused by a heavy impact. The Italian was a poor performer with several defensive errors but his recent attacking input has been key.

Emery is still unsure about Watkins' fitness but assures Martinez and Zaniolo should be available against Brentford.Emery is still unsure about Watkins' fitness but assures Martinez and Zaniolo should be available against Brentford.
Emery is still unsure about Watkins' fitness but assures Martinez and Zaniolo should be available against Brentford. | Getty Images

Onto Martinez, and the World Cup winner was suffering from a stomach bug pre-game and it became unbearable around an hour until kick-off. “He was not available as he was not feeling good before the match. I think he will recover for Saturday,” Emery said.

Now only two points clear of Tottenham Hotspur and with one extra fixture played in the race for UEFA Champions League football, the Villans will be desperate for three points against Brentford. Captain John McGinn returns after his three-match suspension. It awaits to be seen if Watkins will join him.

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