Clare fit for selection for Bolton showdown

Young midfielder Sean Clare is expected to return to the Wednesday squad for Saturday’s important home clash with fellow strugglers Bolton.

Clare missed the midweek home defeat to Ipswich after suffering an ankle problem at Bristol last Saturday but Jos Luhukay says he is now fit for selection.

We go into Saturday’s game still in 17th place and seven points clear of the relegation positions while Bolton, seemingly doomed early in the season, are now just three points behind us after our woeful sequence of only two wins in the last 20 Championship outings.

However, Luhukay has been keen to play down the importance of the match, stressing that whatever happens on Saturday, there will still be nine games remaining and that they are potentially just as important.

The manager has also given his total support to the squad, saying that everyone is giving 100 per cent in matches and that if any player wasn’t doing so then he would act accordingly.

He said: “It is down to them to show the belief and togetherness to turn things around on the pitch.

“The players try to give 100 per cent both in training and in every game but when you don’t get the results there comes a lot of negativity and criticism.

“You must handle that. It is not so easy for the team or the players when the trust is not there but we can only self-help to come to better moments in the future.”

He added: I believe in my players, I believe in the positive character they have and together they must be strong on Saturday.”

Sam Hutchinson and Joost van Aken were both in the under-23s’ starting line-up in the 1-1 draw against Crewe on Thursday but Luhukay said they are not ready for consideration for the first team at this stage. They played for an hour, with van Aken scoring our equaliser.

Also on the injury front, Luhukay said Marco Matias had suffered a setback and is expected to be ruled out for up to another three weeks while Barry Bannan is now back in full training.