Sheffield Wednesday are expected to rest a number of their key players against Fulham in preparation for the Championship play-offs.
Speaking at his press briefing today, head coach Carlos Carvalhal has hinted he will leave wide man Ross Wallace out of his matchday squad for Sunday’s Hillsborough duel. Wallace suffered a minor knock in Saturday’s triumph at Ipswich Town.
“Ross Wallace is okay, but we will protect him - and other players - on Sunday, and give a chance to other players,” said Carvalhal, who was crowned the Championship’s manager of the month for April.
Along with Wallace, Keiren Westwood, Jack Hunt, Daniel Pudil, Glenn Loovens, Tom Lees, Barry Bannan, Adam Reach and Steven Fletcher may also not take part. Joe Wildsmith, Liam Palmer, Morgan Fox, Vincent Sasso, Callum McManaman and Jordan Rhodes are pushing for first-team recalls.
Sam Hutchinson is also in the running to be involved, having resumed first-team training. The midfield enforcer has been out of action since April 1 due to a calf problem.
Carvalhal said: “I don’t know if Sam will play. He is training. With the injury he has, we never know if it will be a problem the next day.
“So far, he trained Thursday and the reaction is good. He will train today (Friday), and if again the reaction is okay, he will play Sunday. He is an important player for us.”
David Jones could feature after recovering from illness.
Carvalhal said: “David is okay. He was sick but has started training this week, so could be involved.
“A lot of players didn’t play part of the season, so our team is very fresh and healthy.”
Fulham, who have all but secured their top-six place, will welcome Chris Martin back from suspension. The striker has completed his three-match suspension for his red card against Norwich last month.
Carvalhal said: “The play-offs start at zero - so it doesn’t matter what we did - but it’s important the we finish the season, strong, healthy and winning. All the players are ready.”