Date:Thursday February 2 2006
After several weeks of fielding unchanged line ups, City boss Gary Johnson has important selection decisions to make ahead of Saturday's trip to Barnsley.
Bradley Orr is definitely out of the side as his booking in last Saturday's match against Swansea was his fifth of the season, incurring a one match suspension.
In addition David Noble, who limped out of the Swansea match after half an hour, is still recovering from his ankle injury. Midfielder Noble has undergone acupuncture treatment but his fitness for Saturday remains in doubt.
To add to Gary's problems, Liam Fontaine received a dead leg in yesterday's 1-1 reserve draw with Plymouth Argyle and is another doubt for Saturday's trip. Fontaine could well have come into the side at centre back, allowing Louis Carey to replace Bradley Orr at right back. However, the manager may well be reluctant to split up the central defensive duo of Carey and Matt Heywood who have impressed during City's recent improved run of form.
Cole Skuse , in excellent form during his substitute appearance against Swansea, looks set to start, possibly, therefore, at right back, a position in which he has no first team experience. This would possibly herald a recall for ex-Everton trainee Scott Brown in the centre of midfield.
Up front, the manager has to decide on a partner for captain Steve Brooker. Bas Savage had a reasonable game against Swansea and certainly gives 100%, but does not look particularly likely to score. The experienced Marcus Stewart and speedy new loan signing Calvin Andrew wait in the wings, but I expect they will have to settle for a seat on the Oakwell bench this Saturday.
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