Cobblers 'close' to full-strength but will be without several players for Port Vale

At least three set to miss opening game

By James Heneghan
Tuesday, 3rd August 2021, 5:30 pm
Sam Hoskins.
Sam Hoskins.

Cobblers will be 'close' to full-strength for Saturday's opening Sky Bet League Two game of the season.

Town kick-off the new campaign by hosting Port Vale at Sixfields this weekend, but they are likely to be without at least three players - Michael Harriman, Jack Sowerby and Sam Hoskins.

Sowerby is definitely out due to a shoulder injury sustained early on in pre-season, although he did take part in running drills before and during Saturday's friendly at Cambridge United.

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Hoskins missed the majority of pre-season due to COVID and has not had enough game-time to be ready for the weekend, while Harriman was absent at the Abbey Stadium after becoming the latest player to be forced into isolation, but he could be in contention to face Vale.

Any players short on game-time will likely be given minutes when Town head to Coventry City for an EFL Cup tie next Wednesday.

"There's a few players that might not be quite ready due to some fitness issues and one injury that we have at the moment," said manager Jon Brady.

"Apart from that, we're close to being there but we still need to give a couple of players some more game-time before we start them and blood them into competitive fixtures.

"We've got to be careful with that, whether we do it in-house or perhaps do it through the midweek game next week, we'll see."