Injury woes leave Wolves lacking bite in attack

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The Independent Football

Wolverhampton Wanderers are desperately short of attacking options for tonight's Championship meeting with Preston North End.

Wolverhampton Wanderers are desperately short of attacking options for tonight's Championship meeting with Preston North End.

Dave Jones, the Wolves' manager, is already without the services of the injured Carl Cort, Vio Ganea and George Ndah and Dean Sturridge is now struggling to be fit for his side's first home match of the season. Sturridge partnered transfer-listed striker Kenny Miller in Sunday's defeat at Stoke but was taken off at half-time.

"Sturridge was feeling his hamstring from about 10 minutes into the game," Jones said. "But we always knew there was a problem and we always knew there was a danger of him breaking down and unfortunately he did."

Jones's problems increased yesterday when it was revealed that Ganea requires surgery for a knee ligament injury and will be out of action for six months. Although Cort should return soon, Wolves could go into tonight's match at Molineux with only Miller and the youngster Leon Clarke fit to lead the attack.

Paul Ince will return to captain the side after serving his suspension for his sending-off against Tottenham in the final game of their relegation season in the Premiership and Jones welcomed the return of the midfielder after his side's poor opening weekend performance. "You need players that are going to pass to a gold shirt," Jones said.

The centre-back Joleon Lescott could also be in contention for a starting place after playing in the reserve team against West Brom yesterday.

Preston will be without Ricardo Fuller who is travelling to America to see the knee injury specialist Dr Richard Steadman. The former Hearts player agreed to join Portsmouth last month but the deal collapsed after he failed a medical test. Steadman operated on Fuller last season and the pair will meet to clear up the mystery surrounding the injury. He should return for the weekend fixture at Gillingham.

Andy Reid is set to start for Nottingham Forest against Ipswich Town tonight at the City Ground despite the manager, Joe Kinnear, suggesting the midfielder will leave if they receive a bid of £5m. The Republic of Ireland international has been the target for Tottenham but featured in Forest's opening day draw at Wigan.

Jim Magilton and Jason De Vos could miss out for Ipswich after picking up injuries in the win against Gillingham. Magilton has a thigh injury while De Vos has knee trouble, meaning loan signing Tony Dinning could make his first appearance since arriving from Cardiff City.

The defenders Mo Konjic and Jamie Vincent have been back training for Derby County but neither will be ready for tonight's visit of Leicester City. The manager George Burley is set to pick the same team that lost at Leeds at the weekend.

Leicester will be without the suspended striker Dion Dublin after his sending off against West Ham last weekend. Dublin will miss the next three games after his dismissal for violent conduct and Nathan Blake is now set to partner David Connolly up front.

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