Sam Ricketts hopeful on a return for Shrewsbury duo Ollie Norburn and Ro-Shaun Williams
Sam Ricketts is hopeful Shrewsbury Town’s ‘mini pre-season’ can help key duo Ollie Norburn and Ro-Shaun Williams return for the next League One contest.
Town are without a fixture this weekend as their home clash with Peterborough was postponed due to international call-ups and Ricketts wants to use the period as a time for recovery, fitness and tactics.
Norburn has been injured since the knee problem he picked up in the pre-season trip to Portugal, while Williams injured his hamstring at MK Dons in the second game of the season.
The duo are back out running in training at Sundorne and could feature at AFC Wimbledon on Saturday week. Ricketts believes Shrewsbury are ‘slowly but surely’ recovering from their injury woes.
“We hope so,” Ricketts said when asked about midfielder Norburn’s hopes of playing the next game. “He’s back running so we have to gauge how he goes now over this mini pre-season period.
“It’ll be good for him. He did the first two weeks of pre-season and has been injured since. Hopefully he’s not too far away.
“Slowly but surely you can see the players are getting there. Josh Laurent is back and has played two games, Louis Thompson played 60 (minutes) for the first time.
“We are slowly getting there. When the lads come back from international duty we’ll start looking very competitive for our places.”
Asked if Williams was at a similar stage in his recovery, the manager said: “Yes, Ro’s not a million miles away either.
“It’ll be great to get everyone back in. We’ve got two new forwards, Ro-Shaun, Norbs, and we’ve got players through two games in a few days – it’s good for fitness.
“Sean Goss, Josh Laurent, Louis Thompson. Slowly but surely we’re getting there.
“When we are fully up and running I think we’ll see big differences in energy levels.”
Sean Goss and Josh Laurent played twice in four days on their way back from ankle and muscle injuries respectively. Louis Thompson, signed on loan from Norwich and building his fitness from a minimal pre-season and Daniel Udoh – who had a groin problem – made their first Town starts on Tuesday.
Romain Vincelot did pick up an unspecified knock in training forcing him out of Tuesday’s EFL Trophy tie at Port Vale. The midfielder has struggled for fitness in recent weeks with a ‘neural problem’ regarding his hip and leg.
Fejiri Okenabirhie’s hamstring injury will see him out for at least another fortnight but, that aside, Town’s previous casualties are well on the road to recovery.