Martinez Hoping For Niasse Debut

Roberto Martinez hopes to be given clearance on Friday to hand £13.5million deadline day arrival Oumar Niasse his debut at Stoke City this weekend.  

The Club are awaiting the completion of paperwork for the 25-year-old Senegal international but Martinez is ready to include him in his squad once all formalities are completed.

The Blues boss will welcome back winger Kevin Mirallas from a tendon problem for the trip to the Britannia Stadium but goalkeeper Tim Howard, defender John Stones and midfielder Mo Besic are all major doubts.

Striker Romelu Lukaku, who sustained a knock to his back against Newcastle United on Wednesday, will be assessed in the build-up to kick off.

Asked at his Friday press conference if Niasse would be available, Martinez said: "It is clear Oumar isn’t ready to play 90 minutes, but he trained yesterday and he was very good. I think he is going to adapt to the physicality of the Premier League very quickly.

"We're waiting just to get the paperwork done. I think this morning was important in terms of getting the final step of that paperwork and we're hopeful that he will be able to be available. If he's not this weekend then clearly it [his debut] will be next week against West Brom.

"We've got Tim Howard, Mo Besic and John Stones who probably it will be too early for them to be involved against Stoke.

"But the positive news is that Kevin Mirallas will be available and, apart from the addition of Kevin, I expect to have the same squad we had against Newcastle."

Lukaku was replaced at half-time of Wednesday's 3-0 win at Goodison Park but Martinez confirmed the Belgian is expected to join in training on Friday.

"He [Lukaku] looked a lot freer yesterday," the Blues boss added. "I thought he looked back to himself.

"After the game he found it very difficult to be able to walk without pain. It was a really difficult injury because all of a sudden he couldn't really feel the backs of his legs and we were a little bit worried.

"But there's no further damage and it was then about making sure he could get the feeling back and join in training today. We'll make an assessment depending on how good he is feeling today in training."
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