npower Championship briefing

Team news and statistics for the weekend's action in the npower Championship.

Last Updated: 27/04/13 at 14:22 Post Comment

Woodgate: Suspended for Charlton clash

Woodgate: Suspended for Charlton clash

Saturday, April 27

Barnsley v Hull

Barnsley could be boosted by the return of Kelvin Etuhu (hamstring), Rory Delap (calf) and Rob Edwards (hamstring). Fellow defenders Bobby Hassell (hamstring) and Jim McNulty (ankle) remain sidelined and midfielder Stephen Dawson sits out the last game of his three-match ban. Striker Chris Dagnall and midfielder Tomasz Cywka are both pushing for recalls.

Hull will be without injured striker Gedo (foot). Midfielder Robert Koren (calf) remains a major doubt after missing last week's goalless draw with Bristol City. Defender Jack Hobbs is hoping to shake off a knee problem but midfielder Corry Evans is available after a two-game ban. Defender Paul McShane (ankle) could also return.

Last season: Hull 3 Barnsley 1, Barnsley 2 Hull 1.

Last five league matches: Barnsley D D L D D; Hull L W W L D.

Top scorers: Chris Dagnall (Barnsley) 10; George Boyd (Hull) 11.

Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire).

Blackburn v Crystal Palace

Blackburn could be without Colin Kazim-Richards (dislocated shoulder), David Dunn (ankle) and Markus Olsson (hamstring) after they all suffered knocks in the 2-1 win over Millwall. All three will be closely monitored ahead of the game, along with Jason Lowe (knee), Gael Givet (hamstring), Martin Olsson (ankle) and David Bentley (knee). Striker Leon Best serves the second of a three-match ban while Jake Kean (knee), Paul Robinson (back/lung), Adam Henley (hamstring), Dickson Etuhu (knee) and DJ Campbell (foot) are out.

Crystal Palace welcome back skipper Mile Jedinak from a two-game ban. Fellow midfielder Jonny Williams (knee) is fit but full-back Jonathan Parr will miss the rest of the season with ankle ligament damage. Midfielder Owen Garvan (knee) is close to returning but defender Paddy McCarthy misses out again with a long-term groin problem.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Blackburn L W W L W; Crystal Palace L L D L D.

Top scorers: Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn) 28; Glenn Murray (Crystal Palace) 30.

Referee: Phil Gibbs (West Midlands).

Blackpool v Derby

Blackpool welcome back Isaiah Osbourne from suspension while Gary Taylor-Fletcher has been cleared to play after he was forced off at Brighton last weekend after clashing heads with Seagulls goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak.

Derby goalkeper Frank Fielding misses through suspension. Adam Legzdins will return between the posts for what will be his first start since losing his place to Fielding at the beginning of March. Leading scorer Jamie Ward (hamstring) and key midfielder Craig Bryson (groin) will continue to play through pain while Will Hughes stepped up his comeback from a groin injury with 45 minutes for the Under-21 side on Monday afternoon.

Last season: Derby 2 Blackpool 1, Blackpool 0 Derby 1.

Last five league matches: Blackpool W D W D L; Derby W L L D W.

Top scorers: Tom Ince (Blackpool) 18; Jamie Ward (Derby) 12.

Referee: Gavin Ward (Surrey).

Bristol City v Huddersfield

Bristol City's attacking options have been boosted with Ryan Taylor and Jon Stead declared fit. Liam Fontaine and Stephen Pearson both remain in doubts with ankle problems while Paul Anderson and Brian Howard are pushing for starts.

Huddersfield will be without injured midfielder Neil Danns (toe). Manager Mark Robins has no other new injury or suspension worries, but winger Danny Ward remains sidelined with a groin injury. Defenders Paul Dixon and Murray Wallace, midfielder Keith Southern and strikers Lee Novak and Alan Lee are all in contention.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Bristol City D L L L D; Huddersfield L D W L W.

Top scorers: Steven Davies (Bristol City) 13; James Vaughan (Huddersfield) 10.

Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire).

Cardiff v Bolton

Cardiff will be without defender Leon Barnett for their coronation as npower Championship title winners against Bolton. Malky Mackay's men will be handed the trophy after the match but Barnett will not be there after being recalled by parent club Norwich. His place could be taken by youngster Ben Nugent while Fraizer Campbell will be assessed.

Bolton could hand a second league appearance of the season to Stuart Holden who has returned from a loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday where he made four appearances as he battles back to full fitness following a long-term injury. Jay Spearing is still recovering from a broken toe. Striker David Ngog (dislocated shoulder) is out for the season but David Wheater has returned to training after a calf injury.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Cardiff D D W D D; Bolton W W W L W.

Top scorers: Heidar Helguson (Cardiff) 9; Tom Eaves (Bolton) 13.

Referee: Michael Naylor (Sheffield).

Ipswich v Birmingham

Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy has no fresh injury or suspension concerns with his only absentee, striker Paul Taylor, having been out since September with a foot injury. Patrick Kisnorbo could return to the starting XI. The defender has come off the bench in the Tractor Boys' last two games. Winger Lee Martin is close to returning from an ankle injury.

Birmingham boss Lee Clark is expected to stick with the starting XI that beat Leeds 1-0 last weekend. Jonathan Spector, Keith Fahey, Marlon King, Stephen Carr, David Murphy and Will Packwood remain long-term absentees. Youngsters Callum Reilly and Mitch Hancox are likely to retain their places in the squad after being given new deals this week.

Last season: Ipswich 1 Birmingham 1, Birmingham 2 Ipswich 1.

Last five league matches: Ipswich D W L W D; Birmingham L D D W W.

Top scorers: David McGoldrick (Ipswich) 22; Marlon King (Birmingham) 14.

Referee: Graham Salisbury (Lancashire).

Leeds v Brighton

Leeds manager Brian McDermott has injury concerns over Rudy Austin (knee) and Adam Drury (back). McDermott must decide whether to retain Jason Pearce and Tom Lees in central defence or recall skipper Lee Peltier, while striker Steve Morison is pushing for a recall. David Norris is sidelined following knee surgery.

Brighton manager Gus Poyet has an unchanged squad with Craig Mackail-Smith (Achilles) and Will Hoskins (knee) the only absentees. Goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak had to go off in the second half after a clash of heads last weekend but he is expected to play.

Last season: Leeds 1 Brighton 2, Brighton 3 Leeds 3.

Last five league matches: Leeds L L W W L; Brighton D D W D W.

Top scorers: Ross McCormack (Leeds) 7; Jose Ulloa (Brighton) 12.

Referee: Graham Scott (Oxfordshire).Middlesbrough v Charlton

Middlesbrough defender Jonathan Woodgate misses through suspension. Midfielder Merouane Zemmama (ankle) and striker Lukas Jutkiewicz (knee) will be assessed. Full-back George Friend (hamstring) and striker Emmanuel Ledesma (ankle) are out.

Charlton will check on Johnnie Jackson and Andy Hughes after both were forced off with knocks during last weekend's 2-1 win over Wolves. Midfielder Dale Stephens and striker Danny Haynes have returned to training after their recent lay-offs and could come into the reckoning, but defender Leon Cort remains a doubt with a knee problem.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Middlesbrough D L L W L; Charlton D W W D W.

Top scorers: Scott McDonald (Middlesbrough) 12; Johnnie Jackson (Charlton) 11.

Referee: Darren Sheldrake (Surrey).

Millwall v Nottm Forest

Millwall are short in defence with Danny Shittu and Shane Lowry suspended meaning Mark Beevers, who had been filling in for Lowry at left-back, is now needed at centre-half. On-loan defender Adam Smith should return from illness although Jack Smith, Alan Dunne or Scott Malone could also step in at left-back. Sean St Ledger (ankle) and Liam Trotter (knee) will be assessed but winger Chris Taylor (groin) is definitely out.

Nottingham Forest defender Dan Harding could feature for the first time under Billy Davies. The full-back might get his chance with Gonzalo Jara Reyes (knee) out for the remainder of the season and on-loan Chelsea defender Sam Hutchinson nursing a knock. Darius Henderson will miss out on a return to his old club as the striker completes a three-match ban.

Last season: Nottm Forest 3 Millwall 1, Millwall 2 Nottm Forest 0.

Last five league matches: Millwall D L W L L; Nottm Forest D D L L D.

Top scorers: Andy Keogh, James Henry and Liam Trotter (Millwall) 6; Billy Sharp (Nottm Forest) 12.

Referee: Kevin Wright (Cambridgeshire).

Peterborough v Sheff Wed

Peterborough defender Gaby Zakuani is expected to be fit after a dead leg forced him off during last weekend's defeat at Derby. Right wing-back Mark Little and centre-half Michael Bostwick could come back into the reckoning, despite both players having been previously ruled out for the season with hamstring injuries.

Sheffield Wednesday winger Jermaine Johnson is doubtful due to a hamstring strain, but striker Gary Madine, sidelined for the past five matches with a hamstring injury, is back in contention. Defender Reda Johnson missed out last week and has not trained this due to an on-going foot problem, but he could play some part. Manager Dave Jones could recall loaned strikers Steve Howard and Chris Maguire.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Peterborough D D W D L; Sheff Wed W W L D D.

Top scorers: Dwight Gayle (Peterborough) 20; Michail Antonio (Sheff Wed) 9.

Referee: Nigel Miller (Durham).

Wolverhampton v Burnley

Wolves manager Dean Saunders will run the rule over Bakary Sako (hamstring) would had looked as though he might miss the rest of the season. Midfielder Jamie O'Hara will serve the final game of a three-match suspension. Long-term absentees David Davis (ankle), Carl Ikeme (broken hand), Sylvan Ebanks-Blake (broken leg), Dave Edwards (metatarsal) and Razak Boukari (calf) will not play again this season.

Burnley could have Michael Duff (calf) available as Sean Dyche's side look to secure their Championship status with a win. Defender Ben Mee is a major doubt as he continues to struggle with the hamstring injury he sustained against Leeds. Top scorer Charlie Austin will not feature again this season after having his appendix removed.

Last season: No corresponding fixture.

Last five league matches: Wolverhampton W L L W L; Burnley D W L L D.

Top scorers: Sylvan Ebanks-Blake (Wolverhampton) 15; Charlie Austin (Burnley) 28.

Referee: Darren Sheldrake (Surrey).

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