Brad Jones is now back in full training following an ankle injury sustained during pre-season and is set to challenge Danny Coyne for the number one jersey.
Coyne has performed admirably between the sticks this season but is struggling with a back problem of his own ahead of the Riverside encounter, and Southgate will leave it as late as possible before making a decision as to who will get the nod.
Midfielder Gary O’Neil could also return after recovering from hernia surgery, which he put off for several weeks before finally having to admit defeat.
Central defender Emanuel Pogatetz is on his way back from a knee operation while Frenchman Didier Digard is also on the comeback trail after a groin injury but neither are ready to face Town. Chris Riggott (ankle) and Matthew Bates (cruciate ligament) remain on the sidelines.
Striker Afonso Alves has completed his move to Qatari side Al-Sadd, defender Robert Huth and forward Tuncay Sanli also recently departed for Stoke.