Clark hints at selection surprises

Jamie O'Hara
Jamie O'Hara
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Lee Clark has hinted there could be a couple of selection surprises when Blackpool travel to Birmingham tonight (7.45pm).

With injuries and suspension once again tearing through Clark’s squad, the manager has been forced to rejig ahead of his return to St Andrew’s, where he was sacked days before taking the Pool job last October.

Forgotten striker Saer Sene is one player in with a shout of a shock appearance tonight.

Clark revealed: “There is potential for one or two shocks.

“There is a possibility for some players who haven’t really had a chance to stake their claim to be part of the future.”

Pool will once again sweat over the fitness of Jamie O’Hara, who was restricted to light training yesterday following a number of injuries.

The midfielder was forced off in Pool’s last two matches with ankle and rib problems.

He’s is rated doubtful for tonight’s game, while Clark confirmed winger Henry Cameron’s ankle injury will rule him out.

The Pool boss said: “Jamie has an outside chance of being fit but young Henry will be four to six weeks, which is a big blow to us.

“When you consider it’s his first time in senior football, he has handled it all really well.

“He has a big future ahead of him, so we are looking forward to him getting back.

“He got a bad twist to the ankle and has a bit of ligament damage.”

One player who is unlikely to feature is Jose Cubero who again is struggling with a knee injury.

The Costa Rican hasn’t played since October and despite being on the bench against Blackburn recently, missed three days of training last week.

Clark feels his squad are ready to try to atone for Saturday’s 3-1 home disaster against Wigan. “It was a tough weekend for everyone concerned,” he added.

“It’s never easy losing a game and that was a huge game for us all, one which could have changed the way the table looks.

“We now find ourselves further away from where we want to be but we have a quick opportunity to get back playing.”

It will be an emotional evening for the 42-year-old, who spent two years in charge at Birmingham but is unsure how the home supporters will react.

Clark admitted: “I really don’t know what sort of reception I’ll get.

“All I know is that I had a fantastic time there and it’s a brilliant football club. It has honourable supporters and great people behind the scenes.”