World Football Weekend Injury Tracker: Vermaelen, Kompany, Chiellini and More
After a midweek schedule of European football, clubs are starting to gear up for the resumption of their domestic calenders on Saturday and Sunday, including checking on the fitness of some of their star names.
A key player missing even a couple of games at this stage of the season might make the difference of winning or drawing a big game or the difference between gaining enough points to make the Champions League places or not.
Here is the roundup of all the latest injury news to the biggest players ahead of this weekend's league and cup fixtures.
Thomas Vermaelen, Arsenal
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Thomas Vermaelen is one of two Arsenal defenders facing a race to be fit for the Gunners' upcoming FA Cup game against Blackburn Rovers.
His sometime partner at the back, Laurent Koscielny, is also recovering from his own injury.
Vermaelen suffered an injury to his ankle and has had injections to aid his recovery, while his team hope he will not have to undergo surgery (via Daily Mail).
Arsene Wenger may choose to leave the defender out for the weekend game in a bid to have Vermaelen fit for next week's Champions League clash.
Javi Martinez, FC Bayern
Bayern Munich midfielder Javi Martinez has been struggling with a toe injury but is hoping to return to action this weekend (via TransferMarkt).
Martinez and his side are away to Wolfsburg this weekend in the Bundesliga.
He has played 19 times in the Bundesliga in his debut season in Germany but only 12 times as a starter.
Giorgio Chiellini, Juventus
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Juventus have been coping admirably without key defender Giorgio Chiellini, but they will still be anxious to get him back in action as soon as possible.
The Italian international was injured in mid-December with a calf muscle tear (via Sky Sports) and is not expected back until the end of this month.
Chiellini has played 13 league games this season for Juve, and when he returns will almost certainly return immediately to the starting XI.
Vincent Kompany, Manchester City
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Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany is a doubt for his team's next game having suffered a recurrence of a calf injury (via Guardian).
City play Leeds United in an FA Cup match this weekend, and Kompany is facing a race to be fit in time, having missed a string of matches recently.
Kompany has featured in both of City's FA Cup matches so far, and Roberto Mancini will be keen to see his captain restored to the team.
Iker Casillas, Real Madrid
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Real Madrid's established No. 1 goalkeeper Iker Casillas has had a rough couple of months; firstly he lost his place to Antonio Adan just before the winter break and then he suffered a broken hand after the restart.
Madrid were forced to bring in Diego Lopez as cover and competition while Casillas recuperates after surgery (via Mirror Football).
Casillas is still several weeks away from a return to action and is not expected to be fit for the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg fixture against Manchester United.