Sporting briefs

Casemiro: Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro will make his comeback from injury in the King’s Cup home match against Cultural Leonesa today. The Brazil international fractured a bone in his left leg in September and has not played since.

Cosmi: Serie B bottom team Trapani sacked coach Serse Cosmi following the side’s 1-0 defeat to Pisa in their last match. Trapani, who almost made it to Serie A last season but lost a promotion play-off to Pescara, are struggling badly in this campaign, managing only one win in 16 matches.

Wenger: Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is likely to make a host of changes to his side when they take on Southampton in their League Cup quarter-final clash tonight. Wenger often treats the competition as a way to blood youngsters in the first team so the likes of Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Jeff Reine-Adelaide and Rob Holding will hope to be involved. Third-choice goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez is expected to start.

Wickham: Crystal Palace striker Connor Wickham faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines after the club confirmed yesterday he will require surgery on a knee ligament injury. Wickham was forced off on a stretcher in Palace’s dramatic 5-4 defeat at Swansea on Saturday. The 23-year-old left the Liberty Stadium on crutches with his right knee heavily strapped, and a subsequent scan has revealed he will be now out of action for a significant period.

Sagna: Defender Bacary Sagna has played down talk of a move to Olympique Marseille amid reports that he is set to leave Manchester City in January. “Marseille are a club that I like a lot, a club that is part of the history of French football,” he said. “But I do not know whether I want to be under so much pressure at the age of 34. I need some calm around me and I am not sure Marseille are a stable club right now."

Henrique: Palermo midfielder Bruno Henrique had surgery yesterday to reduce a fracture to his hand. The Brazilian had two micro-screws inserted to stable his hand as he looks to a rapid return to first-team football for the Sicily club. The Brazilian sustained the injury during Sunday’s 1-0 Serie A defeat to Lazio.


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