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The Hatters head to The Valley tomorrow...

21 February 2020

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Speaking to the press earlier today, assistant manager Gary Brabin said having key players return from injury has had a big impact on results in recent weeks.

As the Hatters hope to be victorious for the third game in succession, Graeme Jones will be relying on a full squad to try and do so – barring the exception of long-term absentee Brendan Galloway.

Firstly, on the fitness of Harry Cornick – who missed out against Middlesbrough after suffering a knock against Sheffield Wednesday – Brabin revealed: “He is one that we will have to assess. He was involved in the training session today and we will see how he is after that. It was a little bit of hamstring, a little bit of back. Nothing too major but we have to see how he is after training.”

Dan Potts was replaced after 71 minutes following a head injury against Boro and Brabin said: “I don’t think it was severe. He carried on after that and he had played three games in a week as well, so it was a combination of things. We’re hopeful for tomorrow.”

Martin Cranie featured for the first time since New Year’s Day at the Riverside Stadium and played 76 minutes with no concerns. On his return to the team, the assistant manager referred to the demands of the league and how useful it is to have a player of Cranie’s quality in and around the squad.

“I think everyone knows the demands physically in this league and you have to max out. You need good competition for places, and I think it helps when you have got all your best players fit and you’re able to make changes, little tweaks here and there that are going to have a big effect on the side.

“We’ve got players like Cranie and Rea competing for the same shirt, you’ve got Carter-Vickers who has come in now along with Sonny and Matty Pearson, and I think that goes right through the squad.”

Pearson played 90 minutes at right-back against Middlesbrough and that is something the coaching staff may adopt again this season.

“He did (put in an excellent display) and it gives us another string to our bow but I’m sure if you ask Matty then he will say he wants to play back in the middle again. It was something we decided would be best suited for that particular game and it’s something we can use if needed again.”

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