Sheffield Wednesday: Bannan poised for Rams return

Barry Bannan

Barry Bannan

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Top Owls midfielder Barry Bannan could return from injury in time for this weekend’s televised clash at home to Derby County.

The Star understands the left-footed player is winning his fitness battle after a three-match spell on the sidelines due to a knee injury.

Bannan, who sustained the problem in the closing stages at Charlton Athletic last month, has been one of Wednesday’s stand-out performers this season.

It would be a big plus if the Scotland international was passed fit to play, with key centre-back Tom Lees likely to miss out.

Lees has shrugged off the ankle niggle which he suffered in Tuesday’s Capital One Cup defeat at Stoke City but is still receiving treatment for his hamstring knock. He was sent for a scan yesterday but it remains unclear how long the 25-year-old will be out of action for. Head coach Carlos Carvalhal is due to speak to the media today.

With Lees expected to be unavailable for selection, Carvalhal may have to ask left-back Daniel Pudil to partner Glenn Loovens at the heart of their rearguard as Sunday’s tussle is set to come too soon for Michael Turner (knee). Vincent Sasso is also ruled out while Claude Dielna and Darryl Lachman are out of favour.

Wednesday, who are poised to hand first-team recalls to Keiren Westwood and Fernando Forestieri, are still assessing right-back Jack Hunt’s calf problem so Liam Palmer is on stand by.

Carvalhal told The Star: “We will not cry about the players who can’t play. We will play with 11 players and be ready to discuss the three points on Sunday. There will be no excuses.”

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