Nottingham Forest boss Aitor Karanka has hinted midfielder Liam Bridcutt will play a part in Wednesday night’s Carabao Cup tie with Stoke City.
Bridcutt has featured just twice this season for the Reds; a start in the second round win over Newcastle United and a late substitute’s role in Saturday’s win over Rotherham United.
But he and others in the Forest squad could be in line for a call up to take on the Potters at The City Ground, with a fourth game in 11 days for Karanka’s men, who face Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
New arrivals Panagiotis Tachtsidis and Claudio Yacob could also be among those pushing for a start.
“I need to check about Panos and Claudio because it is true, everybody is expecting them,” said Karanka. “But I also have to respect the players who were already here like Bridcutt for example.
“If you want to build a team, you have to be careful with these little details, but they are both training well so maybe they will have their chance.
“Liam has been training really well since I arrived here, not just this season but last season as well. He was unlucky when I arrived as he got injured and we had Adlene (Guedioura), (Ben) Watson and (Jack) Colback in his position.
“When he played the last games in the season, he did really well and his attitude is always good. When he played against Newcastle he was brilliant and when he went to the pitch in the last few minutes on Saturday, he was perfect and I think he will get his chance.”
And added: “It is difficult to play three games in one week, so imagine playing four in ten days. I need to check how the players are and then put the best players out for the game on Wednesday.
“I have said always, that we want to go through in the cups. With this squad, we have plenty of options to play. We played with 11 players, three went to the pitch and we have another ten or 11 players to play.
“For sure, those who go to the pitch will be those who are in the better condition.”