Things are beginning to improve for Slaviša Jokanović on the defensive front, but he is still without key squad members ahead of Sunday’s meeting with Burnley.
Denis Odoi returns to contention after serving a two-game ban following his red card in the Play-Off Final, but his centre-back partner from that match remains sidelined.
“We improved a little bit, but still Floyd Ayité and Tim Ream are out of the squad,” Jokanović revealed in Thursday’s press conference. “The rest of the team is available for the game.”
Asked if that meant summer signing Alfie Mawson could be in line for a debut, Jokanović suggested that an appearance against Exeter City next week is more likely.
“Alfie Mawson started working with us after a long period without being active on the field,” he explained. “Now he’s been with us for the last two training sessions. He is going to need time to build his fitness.
“We have some kind of a plan for next week to try and give him some minutes in the Carabao Cup. We still didn’t decide if we are going to try 45 or 60 minutes.
“We are going to observe the situation, but definitely we believe he can start competing with us.”