Jefferson Montero and Fernando Llorente are both considered doubtful for Swansea City's forthcoming Premier League clash with Arsenal on Saturday (15 October). New manager Bob Bradley faces something of a baptism of fire at the Emirates Stadium as he takes charge for the first time since being announced as Francesco Guidolin's successor last week.
Pacy winger Montero made five appearances for the Swans this season prior to suffering an ankle injury, while summer signing Llorente, who moved to South Wales from La Liga outfit Sevilla on a two-year deal in August, was replaced by compatriot Borja Baston for the late defeat to Liverpool due to a rib injury. The 31-year-old striker had earlier notched his opening goal for the club with a thumping half-volleyed equaliser during a 3-1 loss to leaders Manchester City.
While both players may have hoped to edge back towards full fitness for the trip to Arsenal, it appears that their respective recoveries did not progress as quickly as anticipated during the international break. Centre-back Federico Fernandez is expected to return after a groin strain, although Nathan Dyer will remain out until mid-November after undergoing ankle surgery.
"Everyone is back from international duty healthy," Bradley was quoted as saying by by Wales Online at his pre-match press conference. "Fernando and Jefferson aren't back in full training. Their progress has been slower and Nathan is still out, but the rest are available."
Guidolin was handed a new two-year contract in May after taking over from interim boss Alan Curtis and successfully guiding Swansea away from relegation danger, but the experienced Italian later paid the price for a dismal run of form that saw his side drop down to 17th after collecting just four points from their opening seven matches of the new season.
Swansea have only won once – a 3-1 EFL Cup second-round defeat of Peterborough United – since the opening day of the season and disciplinarian Bradley, set to become the first American to manage in the Premier League after being appointed by US owners Jason Levien and Steve Kaplan, has suggested that players out of favour with the previous regime will be given a chance to impress.
"Whenever there's a change it's a fresh start for everybody," he added. "You can see that on certain faces, that's clear. In the moment, you look at guys every day even at a time when there's been a difficult period, you still look at the group and see enthusiasm, fresh faces, a certain amount of excitement and that's a good thing. It doesn't automatically mean because you've changed some things it will come together right away, but it's a start."
Bradley, who has managed Egypt, Stabaek and Le Havre since a five-year stint with the United States national team ended with his sacking in 2011, also predicted that Swansea's style of play would not change markedly under his leadership and confirmed that he has already held talks with chairman Huw Jenkins, head of recruitment David Leadbetter and the club's scouts. He was also keen to stress that he will be "a part" of the transfer process at the Liberty Stadium.