Hartlepool v Coventry preview

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

Last Updated: 16/11/12 at 13:24

Steve Howard: Suspended for Pools

Steve Howard: Suspended for Pools

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Hartlepool manager John Hughes will be without suspended striker Steve Howard for his first game in charge of the club.

Howard received his fifth yellow card of the season in last week's defeat at Yeovil and sits out an automatic one-game ban, so teenager Charlie Wyke, on loan from Middlesbrough, could make his first league start for the club.

Another loanee forward, Sunderland's Ryan Noble, is also back in contention after missing out against Yeovil due to a knock.

Winger Andy Monkhouse has returned to training after an ankle injury that has forced him to miss the last nine matches, but will not be ready to give former Livingston boss Hughes an early boost.

Hughes has no other new injury or suspension worries, but teenage striker Luke James remains sidelined following a double hernia operation as Pools look to secure only their second league win of the season and their first since September 1.

Coventry are not expected to have any new injury or suspension concerns.

The Sky Blues fell to a disappointing 2-1 home defeat to Scunthorpe last weekend, a result which could well spark changes from manager Mark Robins. Striker Stephen Elliott (toe) and midfielders Conor Thomas (ankle) and David Bell (hip), who is back in light training, continue to miss out.

Bottom of the table Pools, winless in 16 matches, go into the clash boasting a new first-team coach in the shape of former Falkirk, Hibernian and Livingston boss John Hughes.

Sky Blues midfielder Steven Jennings spent three years north of the border with Motherwell before signing for City in the summer, and he feels Pools have got themselves a good boss but hopes he does not have an immediate impact.

"I know John Hughes will certainly have them up for the game," said Jennings. "I heard a lot of stories about him, 'Yogi' they call him. He'll certainly have them up for it, no matter who they're playing against. He's a bubbly, lively character and he's not shy about giving anybody the hairdryer treatment. I hope it's not first time, first win for the manager this week but I think he'll do well there."

Jennings added: "It (Victoria Park) is not the best of places to go to having previously been there, it's always windy. But we've got to get there and concentrate on our game, nothing else. If our game plan goes accordingly then we can definitely get the three points."

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