sport

Laudrup: We can cope without Michu

Swansea manager Michael Laudrup has told his side they need to prove they can function without Michu when they face Fulham.

The Spaniard has netted 13 Premier League goals since his summer arrival for 2million from Rayo Vallecano, almost 50 per cent of Swansea's 27-goal tally at the halfway stage of the season.

By contrast, Danny Graham, Luke Moore and Itay Shechter - Laudrup's other striking options - have managed just one league goal between them so far this term.

Laudrup admits the Swans will miss Michu as he sits out the Craven Cottage clash due to the knee injury he suffered at Reading, but knows they have to find ways to perform without him.

The Dane said: "I think in a few days he could be ready but obviously for tomorrow's game he is ruled out.

"But I hope with some good work from our physios he can be back on Tuesday (against Aston Villa). If not he will be back for the week after when we have three games in six days.

"To say you don't miss your top scorer would be a lie but you can't count on one player for the whole season without him getting injured or suspended.

"I think he has played 10 or 11 games on four yellow cards. But now he is injured and out of the game tomorrow."

But there is some good injury news for Laudrup ahead of the trip to London, with Pablo Hernandez and Angel Rangel set to be involved after being hampered by niggling thigh and calf injuries respectively.

"Pablo was more or less there for the Reading game but as I have said you have to be careful with muscle injuries so I did not want to risk anything, and it is important the player feels he is 100 percent," said Laudrup.

"But they are both fit and they will both travel with us so it is good to have that positive news."

Despite Michu's goalscoring prowess, the player and Laudrup are keen for him to be used more in his favoured attacking midfielder role than as an out-and-out striker.

The Swans have been linked with an 8million move for Celta Vigo's Iago Aspas, and Laudrup admits he is an admirer of the 25-year-old.

"He is a very good player, a good forward and he is doing very well at the moment," he said.

"I know him but to say he is coming here is a big step, but he is a good player."

In terms of outgoings, Graham continues to be linked with a move away from the Liberty Stadium.

Laudrup has had no interest in any of his players as yet, but plans to speak to the striker once the window opens.

"Right now there is nothing for any of my players but after January 1 I will speak to the players that are not playing to see what their intentions are and what they want to get from their near future.

"Danny is still part of the plans here but I want to hear from the player because he has not been playing much recently.

"I will be listening to him. There are lots of things to think about."

Laudrup also expects Alan Tate's loan spell with Leeds to be extended to the end of the season.