Blackburn Rovers Vs Fulham, Sun 17 Jan 2010

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Lars Jacobsen has joined Sam Allardyce's growing injury list ahead of Blackburn's Barclays Premier League match against Fulham on Sunday.

The defender suffered a thigh problem in last night's Carling Cup semi final first leg defeat to Aston Villa and looks set to miss out on Sunday's clash at Ewood Park.

Vince Grella (thigh) and Jason Roberts (knee) are also still sidelined, while El-Hadji Diouf is suspended - but Allardyce is hopeful that Gael Givet will have recovered from a head injury in time for the visit of Roy Hodgson's side.

Allardyce's attacking options are a little depleted with Roberts unavailable for selection and Diouf serving a suspension.

The manager is also wary of tiredness setting in with the players facing their third game in a week, and believes an early breakthrough against Fulham will be crucial.

"We have had a game on Monday (against Manchester City), a game on Thursday and now a game on Sunday," Allardyce said.

"We will do the very best we can, but obviously Fulham haven't had a game and that is a little bit of a concern to us.

"They will be that much fresher but we will have to make sure that we give as much effort as we can.

"I'll have to give thought to the substitutions, based on the fatigue of the players as the game goes on, more than at any other time. That will play a key part.

"We have got to try and get our advantage and get it early and then if we dip off later in the game, we've got something to hold on to."

Fulham will have Brede Hangeland available.

The Norway defender came off at half-time during the Cottagers' match against Stoke with a knee injury but is fully fit and will probably replace Chris Smalling in Roy Hodgson's starting XI.

Long-term absentees Bobby Zamora (shoulder) and John Pantsil (knee) will be missing while Simon Davies (foot) and Diomansy Kamara (knee) are also out.

Boss Roy Hodgson has warned Zamora he may feel the effects of his collarbone injury for the rest of his career.

The Cottagers' top scorer had to come off in the second half of Fulham's 3-2 defeat at Stoke on January 5.

Scans revealed the former Spurs and West Ham man had dislocated his collarbone - the same injury that ruled strike partner Johnson out for a month earlier this season.

Johnson has spoken of the constant pain he has had to endure since his return and Hodgson now fears Zamora may experience the same discomfort when he comes back.

"It will be a while before he becomes totally pain free, if ever," said Hodgson, who takes his side to Blackburn tomorrow.

"There aren't many players in top level football who have played as many games as Bobby and AJ who go onto the field without some sort of pain or a reminder from an ancient injury. Everyone has to come to terms with that.

"We don't consider that so much as when will he be medically cleared to play the game.

"Then the players have to manage pain barriers and manage to some extent certain aspects of the injury that mean they have to be very careful before they do something."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Blackburn Rovers
Premier League

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