Hot Competition Up Front

Last updated : 02 February 2002 By Andy Beill
Gary Alexander
Gary Alexander - plays after two-game absence
Top-scorer Gary Alexander has missed the last two games through suspension. He is now available to play, and is likely to be partnered by one of three.

Neil Roberts was brought in on loan to cover Alexander while he was banned. The Welshman has failed to find the net in his two games with City so far.

Lawrie Dudfield is Alexander's regular strike-partner but has been struggling with fitness over the last couple of months. He may be rested.

Rodney Rowe came off the bench on Tuesday night and scored from the penalty spot. He is expected to start at the Shay after such a good performance.

Brian Little said: "Gary's return is a nice boost. He's scored 20 goals this season and he's very important to us. However, Rod did very well the other night at York. He scored one goal and might have managed another couple.
Rodney Rowe
Rodney Rowe - gives side another dimension
"That's the attitude I like to see in players and Rod does give us another dimension in that he is more physical."

Mike Edwards returns from suspension and is expected to resume the right-back position. Ben Petty (gashed ankle) and Justin Whittle (hamstring) are still out, with Ian Goodison (thigh) probably joining them again on the sidelines.

Nicky Mohan could miss the game with a virus. Though he has continued to train, Mark Greaves is expected to take his place at centre-back.

Julian Johnsson is over his bug and will return to central midfield, being partnered by either Richard Sneekes or Theo Whitmore.

Brian Little confirmed: "Julian has had another two or three days to recover from his virus so he's probably ready to be a bit more involved. Against that, Nicky is under the weather. That's no great surprise because there seem to be so many bugs around at the moment.
"Obviously, we need to wait to see how Nicky is but even with the various injuries, we do have options. We won't pick the side until we know how everyone is feeling."

In all there will probably be four changes from the defeat at York.

Expected line-up (4-4-2): Musselwhite; Edwards, Greaves, Wicks, Holt; Williams, Johnsson, Sneekes, Beresford; Alexander, Rowe.
Subs from: Glennon, Mohan, Morley, Van Blerk, Sneekes, Dudfield, Roberts.

It has been confirmed that the game is definitely not all ticket.