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Andy Barcham ready to return for tough test at Barnsley

Manager's update for iFollow ahead of trip to Yorkshire

16 August 2018

Neal Ardley today confirmed that Andy Barcham had shrugged off a toe injury in time to be considered for Saturday's away match at League One leaders Barnsley.

The speedy winger missed Tuesday's Carabao Cup victory at Portsmouth, but he is back in contention for the trip to Yorkshire, and the manager also reported that Liam Trotter and Terell Thomas had shaken off knocks.

Speaking during his pre-match interview for iFollow, Neal said: "Barchy had a problem with his toe, it got a bit infected and he could not wear trainers or shoes, but we got through that, he had medication. He trained today so he will be fine hopefully. Liam Trotter trained today too so he should be fine. Terell is also back in so we are now looking at a 20-man squad that is fit and we are looking to bring in additions as well.

"With getting through in the Carabao Cup, we've got a few weeks now of playing Saturday, Tuesday, up until the Checkatrade Trophy, so for me it is a squad game. There is no way I can rely on the same players to play all of the games. I will say now, 'don't be surprised if it's not the same team every week, even if we win games'. It will not be the same team every week because I have total belief in everyone and everyone needs to play their part. If that means that there are players not playing on Saturday that I've earmarked for Tuesday, then so be it."

Neal's belief in his squad was fully vindicated by the Carabao Cup victory at Portsmouth on Tuesday night. The manager made five changes to his side at Fratton Park and he believes the result showed that the squad are made of sterner stuff this time around.

"We now know that we can come from behind in a game," added Neal. "We have goals in us and we can change things around. We can mix the shape up and if we have to chase a game the boys can adapt to it. That is a big thing for us, to have that belief. Last season we lacked it a little bit, but if we concede one now we can shrug our shoulders and say, 'we go again'. I think that's the most important thing, we've come from behind to win so early in the season."

Neal's full update is available on iFollow, along with an interview with Tom Soares after his impressive start to the season.

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