Middlesbrough v Coventry preview

Team news for Middlesbrough's Championship clash with Coventry at The Riverside on Saturday.

Last Updated: 26/08/11 at 12:49

McDonald: Missing for Boro

McDonald: Missing for Boro

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Scott McDonald will miss the game with the Sky Blues.

The Australia striker has been ruled out until after the international break by the hamstring problem which kept him out of the 2-0 Carling Cup victory at Peterborough.

Full-back Justin Hoyte's thigh injury continues to be assessed but he remains a doubt as Boro attempt to extend their unbeaten start to the new season to seven games.

However, Merouane Zemmama (hip muscle) and Kevin Thomson (leg and ankle) remain on the sidelines.

Keeper Jason Steele is recovering from the wrist fracture he suffered in pre-season but is not expected to return until the end of next month.

Coventry manager Andy Thorn is likely to name an unchanged matchday 16.

Freddy Eastwood returned from a hamstring injury to make his first appearance of the season as a second-half substitute in last weekend's goalless draw against Watford.

Thorn must now decide whether the striker, who also gained further minutes in a midweek reserve match, is ready to start at the Riverside or again step off the bench.

Carl Baker returned from suspension against the Hornets while fellow midfielder David Bell also made a surprise early comeback from his hamstring problem. Both are again in contention.

But Gary McSheffrey (hamstring), Gary Deegan and Richard Wood (both thigh) remain missing for the immediate future.

Centre-back Ben Turner (knee) and striker Clive Platt are back in training and, although this weekend will come too soon, the are hoping to play their part in a series of reserve matches which have been specifically lined up, starting next Tuesday.

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