Crystal Palace have invested in a ‘hamstring machine’ in an attempt to nurse Marouane Chamakh back to full fitness.
The Moroccan forward, who Alan Pardew said is getting closer to a first-team return, is yet to feature so far this season because of an ongoing hamstring injury that disrupted his end to the last.
Having learnt of an imbalance in his hamstrings, Palace – as part of Pardew’s summer overhaul of the club – acquired a machine to directly deal with the problem, and this time the manager said they hope that it will not recur.
“This time we have spent a lot of money on a machine that measures the strength of your hamstring to have it in house,” said Pardew, who is also without another frontman, Connor Wickham, for Saturday’s Premier League fixture at Leicester.
“We used to have it out of house but we felt that that wasn’t good enough for a player of his quality.
“We purchased one ourselves and it means he can strengthen his hamstring every day and with every opportunity that he gets because we do believe that’s the key.
“One of his hamstrings was certainly less powerful than the other for a period last year, and this year the measure is a lot more even.”
Chamakh’s absence, alongside that of Wickham and Dwight Gayle, who is suspended, means that in Fraizer Campbell and Patrick Bamford the manager has only two fit orthodox strikers available for the weekend.
The latter is on Saturday expected to start for the first time in the league this season, and Pardew said: “I certainly feel this week is an opportunity for strikers to make a case. Gayle misses one
game so he comes back for Man City and Man United.
“Therefore that leaves me with two natural strikers here, Fraizer Campbell and Patrick Bamford with Chamakh and Wickham both being injured. Whether I play two of them or one of them, it looks to me like one of them will feature for sure.”