Finnish Under-21 international striker Marcus Forss returns to the Wimbledon squad for Saturday’s League One meeting with Gillingham at The Cherry Red Records Stadium.
The EFL Young Player of the Month for October (pictured centre, with Ashley Bayes and Scott Wagstaff) is back in contention having missed the midweek FA Cup replay defeat at Doncaster, as parent club Brentford don’t want him cup-tied.
“It’s going to be similar with what we took to Doncaster,” said Wimbledon Manager Glyn Hodges. “Marcus Forss can come back in to contention. I was hoping Michael Folivi (groin) would be back, but it’s looking like he might not be. He's been completing his rehab back at Watford.
“Jack Rudoni, who was cup-tied in midweek, is in and around it, but we’ve got enough fit bodies now. We’ve got a big enough squad with quality to get the job done.
“Rod McDonald (knee) is pencilled in for next Tuesday. We’ve got a game at Molesey in the Surrey Senior Cup, so he’ll play in that. He’s chomping at the bit and telling me he is ready, so I think we need to look at him in one of those games first for peace of mind to see where he is with his recovery. If he gets through that game, then he is another name to add to the squad.”
Midfielder Ossama Ashley is also set to feature at Molesey next week, having made good progress after being ruled out long-term following an ACL reconstruction operation. Striker Adam Roscrow has recovered from a thigh injury and is due to return to training next Monday, but Anthony Wordsworth remains sidelined with a calf strain.
With captain Will Nightingale ruled out for three to four months following surgery on his hip this week, Glyn has backed Scott Wagstaff to continue leading Wimbledon on the pitch as he comes up against his previous club tomorrow.
“Waggy has been great as captain,” said Glyn. “The players have a lot respect for him and he leads by example both on and off the pitch. You can see that all the boys look up to him. He has stepped into the shoes as captain and he will quite rightly keep the job. He has done a great job.
“It’s always nice to play against your old team, especially if you’ve moved recently. You never forget if you get the chance to play against your old side. You always want to show them what they are missing, or made a mistake in letting you go or if you’ve moved on to bigger and better things. You always want to show that. We’ve got Luke O’Neill and Callum Reilly too and I’m sure they’ll be doing their upmost, as we all will be, to get the three points.
“I remember John Leslie going to Gillingham! There’s been quite a few. Barry Fuller went the other way, so there’s another. There are many connections between the clubs over the years and we had a good test against them last season. We’ll be prepared and have a plan and put it to work.”
You can see the full interview with Glyn Hodges, including his early thoughts ahead of the January transfer window, via the link below to our official YouTube channel.