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McLeish facing Benitez delay
03 Aug 2009 - 11:57:36
Birmingham City's record signing Christian Benitez seems likely to miss the start of the new season as he is still recovering from a shoulder injury.
The 23-year-old Ecuador international joined the Blues this summer from Mexican club Santos Laguna, but is unable to join in fully in training as yet.
Manager Alex McLeish told the Birmingham Mail: "Christian is still at a stage where he's not going to make any contact training at the moment. It will be more of the running variety.
"We've done the tests on him and he's a bit behind on the fitness as well.
"These situations happen when you buy players from South America. They have finished their season late and they need a little more rest. You've got to be fair to them.
"The important thing is having these guys for the whole season, not just one game and that's what we will be working towards.
"For players to get fully fit, ideally a month is about it.
"Christian had a 12-week recommendation from getting his shoulder pinned from specialists that he could not be involved in any contact and we have to respect them."