Scunthorpe United must decide whether to include Eddie Nolan in friendly against Stoke City
DAVID Mirfin and Mike Grella are among the senior Scunthorpe United players who will be given a run out in a reserve friendly at Stoke City this afternoon.
But the Iron face a conundrum as to whether or not include Eddie Nolan in their line-up at the Britannia Stadium.
Last Thursday, when the fixture with the Premier League Potters was arranged, the Irishman would have been a certain starter as he looks to build-up his match fitness following more than nine months without first-team football.
But with Callum Kennedy out of action with a hamstring injury he picked up at Yeovil Town on Saturday, Nolan, who re-joined United on a non-contract basis 10 days ago, is suddenly a likely starter.
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With full-back cover almost non-existent, boss Brian Laws must decide whether or not to risk the 24-year-old.
“We'll give those on the fringes a game, but it also gives me a chance to have a look at the kids,” said the Iron manager.
“We were trying to get Hakeeb (Adelakun) on on Saturday, but when Callum Kennedy went down, there was no option but to put Eddie on.
“David Mirfin needs a game and certainly the strikers do – I thought Mike Grella looked lethargic when he came on at Yeovil.”
Nolan, who had been without a club since being released by Scunthorpe at the end of his 18-month contract with the club last May, is in good enough shape to help the Iron’s fight against relegation, according to his manager.
“I think he's ready for that responsibility and I think he'll be looking forward to it,” Laws added.
“He'll want to get 90 minutes under his belt today to make the perfect start.
“It looks like he'll certainly be involved on Saturday.”
Damien Mozika won’t feature against Stoke as he is still a week away from being back in full training and while Christian Ribeiro is ‘close’ to returning, also from a hamstring problem, he is ‘not close enough’, the club say, to play today.
Midfielder Robbie Gibbons’ recovery from illness is continuing, but he also misses out.