SUWON, SOUTH KOREA - JULY 22: Carlos Cuellar (L) of Sunderland and Suk Hyun-Jun of FC Groningen compete for the ball during the Peace Cup 3rd place play-off match between Sunderland and FC Groningen at Suwon World Cup Stadium on July 22, 2012 in Suwon, South Korea. (Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)
Martin O'Neill has spoken today about the injury status of Carlos Cuellar and Adam Johnson, revealing that the Spanish defender is set to miss several weeks after picking up a hamstring injury against Liverpool last weekend.
Speaking with reporters in his usual press conference ahead of this weekend's trip to West Ham United, O'Neill said;
Carlos Cuellar has had a hamstring problem so he will be very, very doubtful, not just for this game, but perhaps for the next couple of matches, so from that viewpoint it is a bit disconcerting, but these things happen and you just have to get on with it.
This is a huge blow for us. Cuellar has been outstanding at the back so far alongside John O'Shea, with the duo looking a solid partnership. Next in line appears to be Titus Bramble, who deputised in last weekend's 1-1 draw with Liverpool.
I don't think it's speaking out of turn to say that while we wish Bramble well, we really do, he's going to need to recapture some form he hasn't shown for years to get us through until Cuellar is fit again. Or we hope Wes Brown comes back sooner rather than later.
O'Neill also revealed that Adam Johnson's fitness will not be decided any time soon, and he could leave out the England winger until he is 100% fit;
We were hoping that he would have made the fixture against Liverpool last weekend, but that wasn't the case. He is progressing and it's too early to say about this weekend.
It sounds as though the bench is the most likely destination for Johnson this weekend - from which we hopefully won't have to use him.
Looks like there'll be some significant rejigging of the team this weekend at Upton Park, and we wish Carlos a speedy recovery from injury. Oh, and Titus the very best of luck.