Nottingham Forest manager Billy Davies has revealed that Daniel Ayala and Sam Hutchinson have returned to training and could soon be available for selection.Ayala, who has struggled with a hamstring injury since early January, and Hutchinson, whose knee problem saw him return to parent club Chelsea for treatment, will provide a welcome boost to Davies’ defensive ranks.
But both still have a long way to go in their pursuit of match fitness and, as Greg Halford begins a two-match ban at Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, the Scot’s options are temporarily limited.
Speaking exclusively to Forest Player ahead of his side’s trip to Hillsborough, Davies said: “It has been excellent to see Daniel back in training and I was delighted to see Hutchinson return from Chelsea – it’s great to welcome him back in.
“They’re both a number of weeks away and we must try to get them fit enough to return to first team action. They have both recovered from real injuries and we certainly won’t throw them back in too early.”
Danny Collins is the obvious candidate to step into Halford’s shoes after spending the last three matches on the bench.
And the ex-Sunderland centre back told Forest Player that, if selected, he would relish the opportunity to impress his new manager.
“Greg will be disappointed to have picked up his tenth booking but if the gaffer gives me my chance on Saturday I will hopefully do well and make it tough for him to leave me out.”
You can watch both Davies’ and Collins’ full interviews on Forest Player.
Don’t forget about next week’s double-header at The City Ground. The Reds welcome Ipswich (Tues 5 March, kick-off 7.45pm) and Wolves (Sat 9 March, kick-off 3pm) and you can buy tickets in-person at the Ticket Office, online at www.nffcretail.com or by calling 0871 226 1980 (calls are charged at 10p per minute, mobile rates may vary).