ANDY BOOTH will be back to boost Town's victory chances in front of a sell-out away following at York on Sunday (3.00).
The 30-year-old frontman has missed the last three matches with a hamstring injury but returned to full training today.
News of his availability for the Bootham Crescent trip came as Town were selling the last of their 3,355 tickets for the match, in which Peter Jackson's side are chasing a sixth successive win.
With Nat Brown and Jon Stead still under treatment for knocks but expected to lead the attack against Chris Brass's men, Booth may have to settle for a place on the bench.
His return, however, has given a further lift to the whole squad.
"Boothy is a big character for this club and he is excellent both on and off the field," said the manager, who is hoping skipper Rob Edwards can resume full training tomorrow.
"It is important to have senior players who are professional about the job, and Boothy is outstanding in that and a major part of taking this club forward.
"His 10 goals already and the way he has played have been very valuable to us, but he's just a top man to have around the club."
Jackson also believes 18-goal leading scorer Jon Stead has learned a lot from Booth.
"Steady looks up to Boothy and his form owes plenty to the way the two of them have played together in earlier matches," he explained.
"It's great that Nat Brown has been able to come in and take up where Boothy left off, and I'm sure that once Nat gets among the goals he will get his fair share as well because he is giving defenders nightmares at the moment.
"Most of his 50-odd games for the club have come in defence or wide out, but his overall play in the last few games has been truly excellent, his workrate is fantastic and it's only a matter of time before his name is on the club's scoresheet."
Jackson says he is staggered by stories suggesting Sunderland have offered £850,000 for Stead and that the offer will remain on the table until January 31.
Black Cats chairman Bob Murray told a press conference yesterday: "There is an offer on the table at Huddersfield which we think is a very generous offer. They thought that a Premiership club would come in for him during the transfer window but that has not happened.
"Our interest in Jonathan will only extend to January 31. They are aware of the deadline at Huddersfield.
"After that we can still act in the market. We are offering £850,000. That has always been our offer. It would be half-a- million up front on day one.
"Mick McCarthy thinks that he is a smashing player. He loves him and you have got to support his judgment."
Jackson countered today: "We have had one bid from Sunderland of £800,000 three months ago and nothing else," he said.
"Our stance on the issue has never changed and until someone comes in with an offer we think is suitable, it never will.
"If the right money comes in for Jonathan from the right club, we will not stand in his way. Until then, we get on with the job."
Town received only an extra 225 tickets yesterday, but the whole allocation quickly sold from the McAlpine today.
"It's fantastic news, brilliant," added Jackson.