No break for Alcaraz
Antolin Alcaraz has handed Wigan a significant fitness boost, but could still miss this weekend's testing clash at home to Chelsea.
Last Updated: 17/12/11 2:33pm
Defender Antolin Alcaraz has handed Wigan a significant fitness boost, but could still miss this weekend's testing Premier League clash at home to Chelsea.
The Paraguay international, who was making his comeback from a three-game suspension, was forced off during the second half of last weekend's win at West Brom with a rib injury.
Further scans have revealed the 29-year-old has not broken any bones, as manager Roberto Martinez initially feared, but he still faces fitness tests ahead of the improving Blues' Saturday evening visit to the DW Stadium.
"The first reaction was very positive," Martinez said. "We had the X-ray back from the hospital and it is not a fractured rib, which was our first concern.
"But it is too early to call if he will be fit for Saturday or not - the swelling is still there. Apart from that, everyone is fit."
Alcaraz could be replaced by Emmerson Boyce, who has not featured for six weeks, but is now close to match fitness.
Another player coming back into contention is injury-prone goalkeeper Chris Kirkland.
The 30-year-old's recent loan spell at Doncaster was cut short by a back problem from which he has now recovered.
Martinez said: "He has been training really well since he came back from his loan spell at Doncaster.
"It is a matter of him challenging for a position and he is starting to do that, so it is a positive."