Sheffield United: Samir Carruthers is set to return as striker is ruled-out

Samir Carruthers could return to action this weekend: Simon Bellis/Sportimage
Samir Carruthers could return to action this weekend: Simon Bellis/Sportimage
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Samir Carruthers is expected to return from injury against AFC Wimbledon this weekend, Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder revealed earlier today.

But Wilder used his pre-match press conference to confirm that Leon Clarke is set to miss Saturday’s game after receiving a steroid injection in an ankle.

Carruthers, who arrived at Bramall Lane from MK Dons last month, has not featured since damaging a ligament less than 20 minutes into his United debut at Southend four weeks ago.

“Samir is training and available,” Wilder said. “He’s worked really hard with the conditioners. We’ve seen a little cameo from him and it was outstanding. He’s in contention for the weekend.”

Wilder, speaking at the Steelphalt Academy this morning, shed more light on Clarke’s condition. The former Wolverhampton Wanderers, Bury and Queens Park Rangers centre-forward has also failed to appear on the team sheet since United’s visit to Roots Hall after suffering another set-back in his battle for full-fitness.

“There’s only Leon who misses out,” Wilder said. “He’s had an ankle issue for quite a long time now and we are trying to get to the bottom if it. He’s had a steroid injection and so he’s out for the weekend. Hopefully he’s back sooner rather than later. It’s been a difficult period for Leon because he wants to get out there and be fit. But he can’t train properly at the moment and that’s rolling into games.”

United are second in the table, a point behind leaders Scunthorpe, despite failing to win any of their previous three outings. New signings James Hanson, Jay O’Shea and Joe Riley could all make their first appearances for Wilder’s team when it returns to action following an 11 day break.

“The gap, the break, has probably helped all of us,” Wilder said. “Looking at it, it’s probably come at a decent time. We were able to recharge, regroup and work on a few little bits and pieces that always come up during the course of a long, hard season. It’s given us time to get some bumps and bruises right. From where we are, to only have Leon missing from the group, is excellent. There’s a lot of other clubs in worse shape than we are.”