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Sargent fitness boost for City run-in

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The US international has notched 14 goals in 20 league games either side of a near four-month period out following ankle surgery.

Sargent is also bidding to score in a 10th consecutive Carrow Road league game when he spearheads the Canaries’ attack for Saturday’s derby against Ipswich.

The 24-year-old pulled out of recent international duty, after another blow on his right ankle, with head coach David Wagner revealing at the time the striker was unable to train fully between games.

But the frontman completed his first full training week prior to two 90 minute Easter outings against Plymouth and Leicester City.

“Two full 90s in four days is a big step for him. He hasn’t done this in recent months, to be fair, without any issues,” said Wagner. “Last week he was able to follow the full regime without any issues. Physically you will get fatigued as a player, but he recovered well and now we’d like to push him for the next game.

“Hopefully our season continues quite long; for the maximum it can be. And for this obviously his fitness will be crucial.

“To be fair in this (last) international break, we were not really able to work him. He had to rest and recover his ankle. But obviously it was possible to give him proper treatment. That was beneficial for his ankle because it looks like now is able to tolerate the normal workload and the normal routine, which he was not able to tolerate in recent months.”

Makeshift centre back Jacob Sorensen is sidelined for ’10 to 14’ days after his early exit with a hamstring injury at Leicester. But Wagner has ruled out fast-tracking Grant Hanley into his plans with fellow experienced centre back Shane Duffy only recently available following a calf injury.

The Scottish international is sticking to his tailored individual fitness programme, to play at part at the end of the season, after eight months out with an Achilles injury.

“No, this is something which we will continue with Grant,” said the City boss, speaking at Colney on Thursday afternoon. “Everything he has done so far worked well. We are very happy with the schedule and all the steps. We’ve seen already big improvements in his numbers, but we have to make sure that we follow the process, which takes another roughly two weeks.

“Then he immediately can pop into the training and the game regime as well because he was not injured. It was only that we wanted to get him back to his best fitness level, and that explosiveness.

“Lunghi has a hamstring injury. Luckily, it is not too serious. He will be out 10 to 14 days. And then he will be back in the race.”

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