Thursday, June 20, 2024

Martin gives non-committal answer about Adams fitness ahead of West Brom

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The Scotland international was forced to miss the away leg having been withdrawn due to an injury in Southampton’s 2-1 win over Leeds United.

There was hope that the 27 year old would be able to make the trip to The Hawthorns but his tight calf struggles had not passed.

Less than a week later, Martin explained that Adams is now in a better place to help fire Saints to the playoff final at Wembley.

Asked for an update on the forward’s fitness, Martin said: “He is in a good place. He is in a better place than he was.

“He has done everything he possibly can to put himself in a position to start. We will have to wait and see (if he starts).”

Martin admitted Saints missed Adams’ firepower in the first leg, which finished 0-0 on Sunday, leaving neither side with an advantage heading into Friday’s game.

Adams has scored 15 league goals this season, the most he has ever managed in a Saints shirt and was nominated for April’s Championship player of the month award.

He has hit five in his last seven games – the most of any player in a Saints shirt.

Southampton or West Brom will face the winner of the other semi-final between Leeds United and Norwich City.

West Brom boss Carlos Corberan has his own issues up front as Josh Maja has struggled for fitness all season.

The Nigerian international was a surprise omission from the West Brom squad during the first leg.

Asked if the former Sunderland and Fulham man will return to the squad for the trip to St Mary’s, the Spaniard was relaxed.

“If I didn’t have a striker, the decision with Josh would be done,” Corberan explained. “If I have another striker, the decision is different.

“I am not worried because I am going to have a striker anyway, so there are more decisions which are more important than that one. We signed Josh Maja as a number nine.

“He is a part of the process and he is an important player for us and he will be a very important player for us, but there are moments in which you need to see where you are right now.

“It’s a decision that I still haven’t made, but I will analyse the week and how the other players are and I will do the ordinary process I do to make a decision on this.”

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