Last updated : 11 August 2004 By Editor

As you should know, Ole is out for what is expected to be the season. RVN is out until October, according to The Guardian this morning and Saha for three. This leaves us with Smith and Diego:

Responding to whether he would buy he said: "I can't answer that one really, I'm not really sure of that. At the moment we are just taking stock of our situation.

"Ruud is a straightforward one, he should be back training certainly in a month and should be back playing in six weeks so we know the timescale there.

"As for Louis it's a bit more difficult to assess just when he's going to get back but we hope three weeks will see him back playing.

"He's able to do his preparation work and rehabilitation work at the moment without affecting his injury so when he gets back he should be straight into football training, we are hopeful of that."

He continues: "It is not a great situation we are in.

"The players we have available should be able to do a job because we have some experienced men.

"The big-name players need to perform well. We have people who know what it is like to play away from home in Europe.

"It is going to be a tough game but the important thing for us is to be positive.

"There's no doubt about the game going ahead. The pitch was pretty bumpy and bare in parts but there has been rain in the last two days so maybe that may help."

On Smith: "Alan Smith has been a revelation - he has great courage.

"He also has good experience in Europe from his time with Leeds.

"I bought him for the big occasions and he won’t have any problems with them."