Bent injury boost for the Blues

ALAN Mahon breathed a sigh of relief that a scan has shown no damage to his sore thigh but admits it is still too early to say if he will play against Watford on Saturday.

ALAN Mahon breathed a sigh of relief that a scan has shown no damage to his sore thigh but admits it is still too early to say if he will play against Watford on Saturday, writes Derek Davis.

The better bulletin is that Darren Bent has recovered from his knee injury, will train today and if he has no adverse reaction will start up front alongside Alun Armstrong.

Republic of Ireland international Mahon said last night: "Thankfully the scan showed there is no tear or anything but I can still feel it. It usually takes about 50 hours for the swelling to go down and the bruising to ease so I will see the physio and take it from there.

"I'm hoping I will be okay because I'm desperate to play. I'm really enjoying my football here and I came to play first-team games not sit around injured."


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The loanee from Blackburn has made a terrific impression and will be missed if he fails to make the trip to Vicarage Road, although Ian Westlake will be handed his third start.

Blues boss Joe Royle was hoping for news on a new loan striker this morning after failing to land any one of his targets by last night.

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He had hoped to hear back from at least one club on a player with international experience but still has until mid-day tomorrow to sign someone in time for Watford.

Chris Bart-Williams is back in the side after being ruled out by Charlton for the Carling Cup loss.

Matt Richards, who was left feeling groggy after being elbowed by Simon Baldry in the 2-1 defeat at Notts County is also back to his usual self and will take up his position at left back.

But still out for a while are Drissa Diallo, Chris Makin, Tommy Miller and John McGreal. Martijn Reuser has started light training after a groin strain. McGreal has had an epidural – a pain-killing treatment to the back – as he battles for fitness.

Royle will be hoping Town can stretch their unbeaten league run to three games. After seeing off lowly Wimbledon and Walsall, they now face second-from-bottom Watford.

Victory there last season prompted a Town revival shortly after Royle's arrival and he is hoping for a similar run now.

He said: "We did the double over them last year and our good run started there when we played exceptionally well to win, but it is never an easy place to go

"If we can carry on progressing from last week then we have every chance."

The Hornets will include new defender Stephen Kelly, signed from Spurs on a month's loan.

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