Stoke City face a huge match against Bolton Wanderers in the Championship on Tuesday night, and they have been boosted by the news that James McClean should be available for the contest.
It has been a tough start to their first campaign back in the second tier for the Potters, but they showed good character to come from two goals down at Rotherham United on Saturday evening to rescue a point, and they will look to build on that when the Trotters head to the bet365 Stadium.
Gary Rowett has not yet got any consistency into a side who look to be suffering a major hangover having dropped out of the Premier League at the end of last season, and he will be looking for his side to begin a run of form when they host Bolton.
He will be helped in that quest with the return from injury of James McClean. The former West Bromwich Albion winger fractured his arm while on international duty, but he is set to feature for the first time since then.
Rowett delivered the positive news on the Irishman when he sat in front of the media ahead of the match against Phil Parkinson’s men.
“James McClean should be available which is a positive for us.” The Stoke City official website quote him as saying.
“He is the sort of player you want in these sort of situations – he is a wholehearted individual who, to be fair to him, wants to put the well-being of the group beyond his own best interests.”
“He put his hand up and wanted to feature at the weekend, and to be fair I was close to including him, but in the end I went with the medical advice I was given and gave him those extra few days.
“Macca is a warrior, and he would play through anything if he could – he will have to wear a light cast but he is available for selection.”
Elsewhere, Rowett confirmed that midfielder Sam Clucas is nearing the end of his injury nightmare, and could even feature in a reserve match during the international break.
“Sam is making really good progress,”
“Our plan with him is to get him through a full week of training and then look to include him in a match during the international break.”
“Touch wood, if everything goes to plan, then he would be back and available for selection after the forthcoming break, which would be a huge boost for him and for us.”
Stoke head into Tuesday’s match languishing in the bottom eight in the Championship table and are six points off the play-offs, so a win against Bolton would be very welcome.