Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton has revealed that defender Tommy Spurr has returned to Preston North End for an injury assessment.
The 31-year-old, who is loan at Highbury from Deepdale, has not figured since sustaining a knee injury in Town’s September defeat against Barnsley.
Currently on a season-long loan with Fleetwood, Spurr has failed to establish a regular starting spot and Barton is awaiting news on the defender’s condition.
He said: “I have not seen Tom for a while, it looks like he has had a setback with his injury.
“He is a Preston player so they have taken him back to assess him.
“We are kind of led by them in that regard; no doubt in the next couple of weeks we will have something finite as to whether he is back with us or stays at Preston to overcome the injury he has got.
“We will leave that with Preston and get some feedback in the coming weeks.”
Although Town have brought in Ross Wallace and Ryan Taylor, they have had a trialist in with them this week.
He is believed to be the former North End loanee, Blackburn Rovers and Swindon Town midfielder, Amine Linganzi.
Barton said: “Sometimes it is good to show the group people who are hungry and want to earn contracts.
“There are a lot of good players who are out of contract and out of employment.
“I think sometimes players take it for granted, they can get caught up in what they are doing and forget to see the bigger picture.
“The thing is, I will only take players into the group if I feel it is an improvement on what we have got.
“If it is the same then there is no point in bringing them in.
“He has not played for a long time but he has a lot of good players that he has to get ahead of to earn a contract.
“He has been a good lad and given a good account of himself.
“The worst case scenario is he gets two weeks of training which put him in a better spot.
“It is a win-win for everyone; if he signs for us great, that shows he has got a lot of ability and is better than what we have got.
“If not then he goes to the next place with a better chance, fitness and confidence than he had.”