TOWN fans seem certain to have to wait to get a first glimpse of new midfield signing Jim Goodwin.
While summer arrivals Chris Lucketti, Andy Butler and Keigan Parker all played in the 1-1 draw at Bury, the 26-year-old Irishman Goodwin was sidelined by a thigh strain.
The niggle is highly likely to keep him out of tonight’s 7.00 kick-off against AFC Emley at the Welfare Ground, too, as manager Stan Ternent adopts a ‘no risks’ policy to selection.
On that basis, Jon Worthington and trialist Tony Grant (both hamstring) and striker Andy Booth (back) are unlikely to figure against Ian Banks’ Northern Counties East League side.
And trialist goalkeeper Paul Gerrard, who played the second half at Gigg Lane on Saturday, has suffered a groin niggle in training and will have to come through a late-afternoon fitness test to prove he’s okay.
Ternent has put England age-group keeper Alex Smithies on standby to play and is again planning to use as many of those on duty as possible after fielding 20 in the opening friendly.
“We do have a few injury niggles kicking around and there is absolutely no point in risking any of them tonight – it’s a no risk deal,” said Ternent today. “If we set anyone back a week in their training then we are just creating unnecessary problems, so everyone will have to be 100%.
“All the lads who were carrying niggles from Saturday worked with Ian Liversedge (the new physio) yesterday and we will have a look at them before we go up to Emley, but no-one will be risked when we’ve got the Hartlepool tournament coming up this weekend and the opportunity to play behind closed doors as well before we play Sheffield United at home a week on Saturday.”
Ternent, who was attending today’s club board meeting, has refused to comment on reports linking Town with a £700,000 move for Ipswich duo Alan Lee and Gary Roberts.
Lee, the striker whose goal relegated Leeds, played for Ternent at Burnley, but he has just signed a new two-year deal and has indicated he has no intention of leaving Portman Road. Ipswich also turned down a £700,000 bid for him from Hull last season.
Roberts is valued at up to £200,000 on his own.
Redfearn for Emley – football latest on Page 38.