Gray spoilt for choice for Cardiff game

Stuart Gray finds himself in the luxurious position of who to play and who to leave out as Wednesday prepare to take on Cardiff at Hillsborough on Saturday.

The deadline day influx of four new players means Gray has options in several places as he considers changes following two poor displays against Birmingham and Reading.

He knows he will need to make one alteration in the centre of defence, with skipper Glenn Loovens suspended, and Claude Dielna looks the most likely to fill the gap. Gray also continues to wait on the fitness of Jose Semedo after he missed the Reading game with a toe infection and he is rated doubtful.

Of the new signings, there will be a question mark over the match fitness of Sergiu Bus and Lewis McGugan – Bus has not played competitively since the Bulgarian winter break in mid-December while Gray says McGugan has hardly trained at parent club Watford, since returning there from his first loan spell at S6.

Midfielder Filipe Melo only trained with his new team-mates for the first time today, having returned to Portugal after his signing to attend to some personal matters, but he did play a competitive match last Friday.

Marnick Vermijl will also come into contention for a starting place at the back.

Gray has hinted that even if one or two players aren’t 100 per cent in terms of match sharpness, then they could still start the Cardiff game. He said that with a large squad – he had 24 outfield players training today – he could name some players in the starting line-up and ask them to “blast it” for an hour before introducing experienced substitutes from the bench.

He said: “If I feel it is right to put them in then they will play” and added “the new signings are all raring to go”.

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