New signings wait for all clear

Last updated : 09 August 2007 By Ben Collins
Fellow newcomers Valeri Bojinov and Vedran Corluka were today granted work permits but are unlikely to receive international clearance before the big kick-off.

However, Elano is hopeful of getting international clearance in time and would be firmly in contention to start if given the all clear.

The Brazilian midfielder impressed in last week's friendly defeat by Valencia - his first appearance for the Blues - and could prove to be Sven-Goran Eriksson's best signing this summer.

Martin Petrov has also been impressive in pre-season and is sure to start on the left of midfield, with Javi Garrido as left-back for the suspended Michael Ball.

Richard Dunne, Nedum Onuoha and Micah Richards are expected to complete the back four, with £8.8m capture Rolando Bianchi sure to start up front.

But who Eriksson names in midfield and attack alongside Elano, Petrov and Bianchi is anyone's guess.

As well as hoping Elano gets the go-ahead, Eriksson will also be aiming to bring in a senior goalkeeper, but with time almost up, Joe Hart looks set to deputise for the injured Andreas Isaksson.