KYRAN Johnson is out of Oldham’s clash with Coventry Bears at the Vestacare Stadium on Sunday, but Luke Hooley is back in contention after training with Roughyeds for the first time since he damaged a shoulder at Doncaster five weeks ago.
Full-back Johnson picked up a similar injury at Newcastle and he is still struggling with it.
He hasn’t trained since so he won’t play on Sunday, but on-loan Hooley’s timely return to combat puts him in the mix as an obvious replacement.
Coach Scott Naylor will name his 19-man squad later, but he has promised changes and he will be looking for a positive response after the defeat at Newcastle.
Said the Oldham boss:
“Kyran and Danny Bridge (suspended) are the only players who won’t be available, but I’ll be making changes and hopefully the lads who come in will take their chances.
“We need to produce a good performance to build confidence for the York game.
“If we turn up with the right attitude and put together a polished and professional performance it will be just what we need ahead of the York and Bradford games.
“The challenge then will to repeat it against the top two.
“Since our eight wins in a row ended, we have shown no consistency whatsoever. We have been very inconsistent, in fact, and it has badly affected our position in the table.
“I’ll be looking for a good performance on Sunday and then maintaining that standard on the run-in.”
Danny Langtree, who has scored more tries this season than any Oldham forward in any season since the new club was formed in 1997, has climbed to joint fifth in League 1’s list of leading try scorers.
‘Langers’ has scored 18 tries in all competitions — 15 of them in League 1.
The only players with more League 1 tries are Ethan Ryan and Elliot Minchella of Bradford Bulls, Joe Batchelor of York City Knights and Lewis Young of Newcastle Thunder.
Paul Crook, fifth in the list of League 1 goalkickers and points scorers, needs three more goals to reach 100 for the season.
One of several clubs finding it hard to make ends meet in the current financial climate, Roughyeds hope fans will rally round to support the club on Sunday.
There are only two home games left, Coventry on Sunday and Bradford Bulls on September 16, and the close season will soon be here with few opportunities for cash flow.
Of the 11 home league games played so far only the first three pulled in attendances of more than 500.
Average for the other eight was 422 — a worrying shortfall.
From 2pm on Sunday the club shop will be open and Craig Halstead is driving from his home in Bangor, North Wales to sell signed copies of his latest book, ‘Roughyeds – Against all the Odds’, which sells at £12.95 with all profits going to the club.
Replica jerseys and club memorabilia will also be available.
Sunday’s Roughyed Review, 24 pages of club news and views, includes a two-page picture special of our Roughyeds trip to Wembley last Saturday.