Hartlepool v Leyton Orient preview

Team news ahead of Saturday's League One clash between Hartlepool and Leyton Orient at Victoria Park.

Last Updated: 27/04/12 at 13:18

Collins: Fitness race

Collins: Fitness race

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Hartlepool defenders Sam Collins and Evan Horwood are hoping to prove their fitness in time for the clash.

Collins missed last week's draw at Tranmere due to a calf strain, while Horwood was sidelined with a knee problem.

Jordan Richards, 19, made his full debut in their absence in the back four at Prenton Park alongside fellow teenager Jack Baldwin and manager Neale Cooper must decide whether to stick with his youngsters if either Collins or Horwood return to full fitness.

James Poole is back in training following thigh and hamstring problems that have kept him sidelined for the last month, as have fellow strikers James Brown (groin) and Colin Larkin (knee), but none of the trio are expected to play any part.

Luke James is likely to resume up front alongside Ryan Noble, while a fourth teenager, defender Darren Holden, is hoping to feature again after making his first-team debut off the substitutes' bench at Tranmere.

Jimmy Smith could return to the Leyton Orient starting line-up.

The midfielder needed an operation on a broken cheekbone earlier this month but made his comeback as a late substitute against Yeovil last weekend.

On-loan Southampton defender Ryan Dickson is still suspended following his red card at Sheffield United a fortnight ago, so utility man Leon McSweeney will once again deputise at left-back against the club he left last summer.

Centre-half Scott Cuthbert is still out with a hamstring injury and goalkeeper Lee Butcher has a knee problem.

Russell Slade's side are currently four points above the relegation zone after they ended a run of five straight defeats with a 2-2 draw against the Glovers.

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