Leicester City have been able to utilise summer signing Matthew Upson for only 59 minutes of the Premier League so far.
This is because the former West Ham and Birmingham City defender has suffered numerous injury problems since signing for the club. At 35 years of age, manager Nigel Pearson was hoping to utilise the defender’s experience in the best possible way.
This has not happened. His much awaited debut came in the 2-1 defeat against Arsenal last week, but he could not last the full match after hobbling off in the 59th minute with an injury.
Pearson says that he is hopeful of getting the defender back in time for the FA Cup match against Aston Villa. This is unlikely to be a priority for the club, who are bottom of the Premier League with four points separating them from the 18th place. Leicester will be quite happy to go out of the cup competition in order to focus on the Premier League, which has far better financial rewards if the club ends up staying for next season. Despite this, Pearson has confirmed that he has no plans to put the league in front of the FA Cup. He says that he will be fielding a strong line-up against Villa.
“I’m working hard to make sure we’re as prepared as we can be for this game. I’m focused on the team.When you’re not winning in the league, cup competitions give you the chance to win games and build confidence. The players have my full support, but they need to perform themselves. They have a responsibility to do so.We want to progress in the FA Cup, but I’m sure Aston Villa will have something to say about that. It’s important for the players that they approach this in a positive manner,” said Pearson.