Stan has few options

Last updated : 26 December 2002 By Tony Scholes
Ian Cox - could return alongside Arthur Gnohere in the centre of defence
The Clarets are set to take on Wolves in what will be the first Boxing Day game at Turf Moor since 1997 and a 0-0 draw against Chesterfield. Boxing Day has not been the most successful of days for us over recent years and the last time we won was in 1993 when Wrexham were beaten 2-1 on the Turf.

Although loan signings can be brought in up to a cut off point this morning we can only assume that there will be no new players in the squad. Those out injured and unavailable for the game at Gillingham will remain so which once again means Steve Davis, Lee Briscoe and Paul Cook are all out along with Gordon Armstrong and Andy Payton, two players who hardly feature.

In effect it will be the same squad that took on Gillingham and the big question is whether Stan decides to give any of his subs a start.

Ian Cox came on to replace Arthur directly after the last goal of the game but it would come as no surprise to see Coxy back in alongside Arthur to re-form what has been our most successful defensive pairing this season.

It could also be a case of any Moore for any Moore and Alan could get the nod ahead of Ian after replacing him at half time on Saturday.

Burnley could line up: Marlon Beresford, Dean West, Ian Cox, Arthur Gnohere, Graham Branch, Glen Little, Paul Weller, Tony Grant, Alan Moore, Robbie Blake, Gareth Taylor. Subs from: Mark McGregor, Brad Maylett, Ian Moore, Dimitri Papadopoulos, Mark Rasmussen, Matthew O’Neill.

With Nathan Blake ruled out David Jones was relieved to learn that both Dean Sturridge and loan striker Carlton Cort, from Chelsea, were passed fit after picking up injuries at Millwall last Saturday. Cole in fact was withdrawn from the action after just 58 minutes being replaced by George Ndah. And a further boost was the fact that Mark Kennedy was also declared fit after missing training on Monday.

Jones said of the game, “It doesn’t matter that we’ve got a good record against Burnley. Stan’s team will be up for it. They are always very solid and never give up. If we are not up for it we could be turned over.”

He is expected to name an unchanged side which is: Matt Murray, Marc Edworthy, Mark Clyde, Joleon Lescott, Denis Irwin, Mark Kennedy, Alex Rae, Paul Ince, Kevin Cooper, Carlton Cole, Dean Sturridge. Subs: Michael Oakes, Paul Butler, Colin Cameron, Kenny Miller, George Ndah.

Click HERE for more on Wolves and a look back at past games and a former player of both clubs.