Sheff Wed v Hartlepool preview

Team news for Saturday's League One clash between Sheffield Wednesday and Hartlepool United at Hillsborough.

Last Updated: 20/01/12 at 13:51

Bennett (r): In contention for Wednesday

Bennett (r): In contention for Wednesday

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Sheffield Wednesday defender Julian Bennett is expected to be back in contention.

Bennett missed the Owls' first home league defeat of the season last week, to Charlton, due to a nasty facial cut sustained in the FA Cup win over West Ham, but could return to the starting XI as manager Gary Megson ponders one or two changes.

Winger Ben Marshall is unavailable as he has returned to parent club Stoke, so Jermaine Johnson may be recalled to the squad, while another wide player, latest signing Mike Jones, is hoping to retain his place in the line-up.

Lewis Buxton (hamstring) could also provide Megson with further options in defence by returning to the squad following a 10-game injury lay-off.

Megson must decide whether to retain Nicky Weaver in goal or recall Stephen Bywater as his side bid to keep pace with city rivals Sheffield United and Charlton in the automatic-promotion places.

Hartlepool midfielder Andy Monkhouse is back in contention for a place in the starting line-up after illness.

Monkhouse was restricted to the role of unused substitute in last week's goalless draw at Exeter.

Manager Neale Cooper is also expecting striker Adam Boyd to return to the squad after illness prevented him from being included at all last week.

But Cooper, who returned to Victoria Park for a second spell in charge last month, may have to wait a little longer to see another of his strikers, James Poole, in action.

Poole has been sidelined with a hamstring problem since the Boxing Day win at Oldham and remains doubtful.

Forward Colin Nish, sidelined since the end of October with a knee injury, has returned to full training, but is short of match fitness. Cooper has no other new injury or suspension problems as his side look to extend their unbeaten run to three matches.

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