Manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink made wholesale changes for Tuesday’s FA Cup tie at Glanford Park, some enforced and some not, but he will be back to somewhere near full strength for this weekend.
Matt Ingram, Regan Poole and Matt Grimes will return after all three missed out on Tuesday for various reasons while David Buchanan and Brendan Moloney were rested completely.
Lewis McGugan and John-Joe O’Toole played only 10 minutes after starting on the bench and Leon Barnett returned to the matchday squad for the first time in two months having recovered from an Achilles problem.
Super Zaib helps Steelbacks to chase down Eagles
Saints players can show what they are made of during hectic start to season
Northamptonshire share spoils with Warwickshire after 'turgid' final day
NORTHANTS CRICKET LEAGUE: All your results and fixtures
Ripley admits Northants will 'have to do it the hard way' as they bid to save game at Lancashire
Reflecting on his decisions and why he made them, Hasselbaink explained: “Some were rested, some weren’t.
“We know that JJ (O’Toole) has just come back from injury. He had to come off last week and then he played 70 minutes against Oxford. You have to manage that and he will be ready for Saturday.
“We know that we have Regan Poole coming back after he was with Wales and McGugan hadn’t played a competitive game for over 18 months before he came to us and I have to think about that.
“Luckily Leon is back with us and I’m happy to have him, so I have choices for Saturday and we’ll have a look at what we’re going to do.”
There’s also good news on Powell after he limped off with a hamstring injury only 19 minutes into Saturday’s 2-1 win at Oxford United.
But the fitness of Hoskins, injured in the original FA Cup tie with Scunthorpe, is less certain.
“Sam is out at the moment,” added Hasselbaink.
“We don’t know yet when he’s coming back. He’s running but I don’t know if he will be available for Saturday.
“Powell’s training again. It was a precaution and hopefully he’ll be ready for Saturday.”
Ryan McGivern is another player, along with Barnett, who could add defensive cover, although Hasselbaink still feels he’s not quite fully fit.
“He did all right,” said Town’s manager n McGivern’s performance at left-back on Tuesday. “He didn’t really get into trouble but he’s still getting fit.”