Nacional v Birmingham preview

Team news ahead of Thursday night's Europa League clash between Nacional and Birmingham at the Estadio da Madeira.

Last Updated: 17/08/11 at 15:27

Blues: Begin their European adventure

Blues: Begin their European adventure

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Jordon Mutch is still awaiting news on the seriousness of his ankle injury as Birmingham travel to Portugal without him to face C.D. Nacional in the first leg of their Europa League play-off.

The talented young midfielder is still awaiting results of an x-ray having gone over in training on Tuesday but manager Chris Hughton has already confirmed he will be missing for "some period of time", amid fears he may have broken a bone.

Otherwise, Hughton continues to do battle without key strike trio Cameron Jerome (heel), Nikola Zigic (groin) and Marlon King (knee), none of whom have boarded the plane bound for Madeira.

Among Blues' 20-man squad is sought-after centre-back Scott Dann, who has been an unused substitute in both of Blues' Championship matches to date.

Hughton is trying to balance European progress with a Championship promotion bid, and he told the club's official website: "I will certainly be making some changes but not wholesale ones.

"We have got four games in two weeks and what we've got to do is try and utilise the players we've got over that period of time. Unfortunately for me the depth of the squad is not that big but I have to use the squad."

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