(Reuters) – Southampton manager Mark Hughes will make a late decision on whether to include striker Danny Ings in his squad for Saturday’s Premier League trip to Crystal Palace.
Ings returned to his boyhood club earlier this month on a season-long loan from Liverpool before a permanent move next year.
He has featured in all three of Southampton’s league games this season, scoring against Everton, but sat out Tuesday’s 1-0 win at Brighton and Hove Albion in the League Cup with a foot problem.
“We’ve got a slight concern with Danny, he’s got a sore foot,” Hughes told reporters on Thursday.
“We’re going to have to settle that down, he hasn’t been on his feet too much this week.
“We felt that was the best thing, to take the pressure off the area. Hopefully that’ll allow him to be in a better place in terms of the injury.”
Hughes was delighted that goalkeeper Alex McCarthy was handed an opportunity to prove his credentials on the international stage after the 28-year-old was called up by England for September’s matches with Spain and Switzerland.
McCarthy established himself as Southampton’s first-choice goalkeeper under Hughes during the latter half of the last campaign and has started all three league games so far this season.
When asked if McCarthy can challenge Jordan Pickford for England’s number one jersey, Hughes said: “I see no reason why he can’t. His fundamentals are very sound.
“He’s a big guy but very mobile, very dynamic in his box as well. He’s a top level keeper and will push whoever’s in possession of the shirt I’m sure.”
(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis)