DONCASTER Rovers will lack the services of in-form on-loan striker Iain Hume in tonight’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Northern Section second round tie against Chesterfield at the Keepmoat Stadium (7pm).
Hume misses tonight’s game and Saturday’s League One trip to Hartlepool United after being called up for World Cup duty with Canada.
“I knew he would be unavailable and that’s why I played him on Saturday and rested Chris Brown,” said Rovers’ boss Dean Saunders.
“There are only three strikers and they have to share the workload.”
Saunders makes no secret of the fact that the league is his priority and admits that he plans to make changes against the Spireites.
His options are limited, however, due to the fact that he has to start with seven of the players who started in Saturday’s 1-0 win over Shrewsbury Town to meet the requirements of the competition.
Saunders planned to delay selection until later today in order to check on several players carrying minor knocks.
But he is thought to be toying with the idea of giving an outing to former Chelsea midfielder Michael Woods, who has joined the club on trial on a non-contract basis.
He could also decide to give veteran keeper Neil Sullivan his first start of the season.
He also has Martin Woods, who missed Saturday’s game with slight concussion, available.
Despite his focus on the league, Saunders is hoping that his side can come through tonight’s test and book their place in the Northern Section quarter-finals in December.
“We’ll be going out there to win tonight, we don’t take anyone lightly.” he said.
“We have gone through the same ritual yesterday as we normally do for a league match.
“I just hope that we don’t pick up any more injuries or bookings.”
With the Spireites having picked up their first win on the road this season at Aldershot on Saturday, Saunders is expecting a tough game.
“They are the holders and they’ll be wanting to try and keep hold of the trophy,” he said.
“They had a bad start and lost their manager early on but they’ve had a revival and they’ve got some good players.
“Sometimes it takes time for teams to gel. We are sill gelling but are in a great position having lost only once in our last five league games.”
Defender Jamie McCombe, meanwhile, is facing at least two months out after a scan confirmed he has suffered a hairline fracture in his back.