Roberto de Zerbi only wants Alexis McAllister back “when he’s ready to play” with the World Cup winners still celebrating… but the Brighton boss admits his side are “not used” to competitions like the World Cup.
Brighton boss Roberto de Zerby says he wants Alexis McAllister to return to the club game “when he’s ready”, with the transition from the World Cup not easy.
Seagulls midfielder Mc Allister was part of the Argentina side that reached the final of the tournament in Qatar last week, beating France on penalties.
De Zerby said on Tuesday that the 23-year-old had “two weeks off”, and on Friday the manager was asked if that meant McAllister would return for the Premier League trip to Everton on January 3.
Roberto De Zerbi doesn’t want Alexis McAllister back until he’s fully fit
The Italian said: “I have to speak to him, but there is no problem when he comes back.
“The problem is our players, they are not used to playing in this competition. This competition is very important for them and there is a lot of pressure and I want Alexis to come back when he is ready to play.
The players who stayed at the World Cup, it is not easy for them to overload in the Premier League with 100 percent focus on our team. But this, of course, is completely different.
“Manchester City, Liverpool players – I watched the game yesterday (between those teams in the Carabao Cup) and it looks like they’ve never played in the World Cup. For us it’s completely different.”
Mac Allister has emerged as one of Brighton’s key players at the club over the past year
Brighton’s first match since the World Cup, Wednesday’s Carabao Cup loss to Charlton in a 0-0 penalty shoot-out draw, featured several Qatar-bound players.
Moises Caisdo and Tarik Lamptey started, Leandro Trossardi, Kaoru Mitoma and Pervis Estupinan came off the bench and Jeremy Sarmiento was an unused substitute.
De Zerby, speaking at a press conference before his side resume their league campaign at Southampton on Boxing Day, was then asked if he had found, with some of the players already back from the World Cup, struggling at all, and he said. : I don’t think so.
He was part of the Argentina team that beat France in the World Cup final and scored the second goal
But we have to be focused on this possible problem because for Mitoma, Moises Kaisdo, Pervis, in 20 days they have changed a lot.
“They played in 25 degrees in Qatar and 10 days later in Britain they played in five degrees in the Carabao Cup. The World Cup is a completely different competition and it is not easy to reset in the right way. It’s not natural.’
Brighton’s 20th cup match on Wednesday – after which De Zerby apologized to the traveling fans – did not include goalkeeper Robert Sanchez, a member of Spain’s World Cup squad.
The goalkeeper of the Spanish team, Robert Sanchez, did not participate in the team for the match against Charlton.
Sanchez will be available for the Boxing Day game, De Zerby said: “He’s fine, he’s back home very well and ready to play – but Jason Steele played well (against Charlton) and I’m very happy for that. Him.’
Brighton are without striker Danny Welbeck and defender Adam Webster due to injury.
“They can’t play,” De Zerby said. I don’t know if Welbeck can play against Arsenal (on New Year’s Eve) but I’m not sure. Webster I think not – 100 per cent for Southampton and maybe for the next game too.’
Danny Welbeck is also expected to miss the next game due to an injury sustained in a friendly match