JACK RODWELL and Billy Jones are pencilled in to return for Sunderland’s trip to Hull City next week, rather than being risked at Manchester United on Saturday.
Midfielder Rodwell has been out for almost a month with a groin problem, while full-back Jones missed last weekend’s stalemate with his former club West Brom due to a swollen ankle.
The pair have been in light training this week, but Sunderland boss Gus Poyet will adopt a safety-first approach with them and wait until Tuesday’s trip to bogey team Hull to bring them back into the fold.
However, other than long-term absentee Emanuele Giaccherini, Poyet has virtually a fully-fit squad to pick from for this weekend’s trip to Manchester United and has been able to prepare in detail for the Old Trafford clash.
Poyet said today: “We are not going to risk Billy. We’re going to wait until Tuesday and Jack the same.
“But the rest of the squad is there. We’re in good shape. Now it’s up to us to perform on Saturday at 3pm.
“I like to plan a little bit and train a few things, and when you have most of the squad that you have for the weekend, you can really do things in a different way.
“Even a corner. If you have everyone training, it’s easier.
“Last week, three or four players who played at the weekend didn’t train until the Friday.
“This week has been much better.”