Colchester to make late judgement on midfielder’s fitness


Colchester boss Hayden Mullins is waiting on the fitness of Alan Judge ahead of the visit of Bristol Rovers but Ryan Clampin will sit the game out.

Both players were unavailable for Saturday’s win over high-flying Harrogate, with experienced midfielder Judge ruled out with a calf issue and defender Clampin having tested positive for Covid-19.

Judge has undergone a scan on his injury and has not yet been ruled out of the Rovers match, but Clampin will not be involved as he is self-isolating for 10 days and joins the injured Miles Welch-Hayes on the sidelines.

On-loan Fulham striker Sylvester Jasper is pushing for a start after coming off the bench to net a late winner against second-placed Harrogate.

Harvey Saunders looks to have joined Bristol Rovers’ lengthy injury list after he was forced off in the first half of Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Bradford following a clash of heads.

Rovers boss Joey Barton was already without a host of players, including long-term absentees Leon Clarke (hamstring), Anssi Jaakkola (Achilles) and Alex Rodman (foot).

Midfield duo Sam Finley (thigh) and Josh Grant (foot) are likely to be sidelined for another fortnight and while defenders Mark Hughes (Achilles) and Junior Brown (rib) are closing in on comebacks, the trip to Colchester is set to come too soon for them.

Brett Pitman, who scored a last-gasp equaliser against Bradford, could start up front in place of Saunders while Luke Thomas, Sam Nicholson and Trevor Clarke may also be drafted in if Barton opts to freshen things up.

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