SPIREITES: Chesterfield boss Dean Saunders waiting on Lee Novak recovery for Millwall

Chesterfield vs Rochdale - Lee Novak is left with a bloodied nose - Pic By James Williamson
Chesterfield vs Rochdale - Lee Novak is left with a bloodied nose - Pic By James Williamson

Dean Saunders is waiting on the fitness of attacker Lee Novak ahead of tomorrow’s visit to Millwall.

The man on loan from Birmingham City is Spireites’ only worry after picking up a nasty facial injury in the goalless draw with Rochdale last Saturday.

“I’ll leave it as late as I can,” said Saunders with regard to Novak’s availability, “He’s been back at Birmingham and we’ll take a look at him on Friday and see how he is but I’ll wait until Saturday if I need to, but I think he’ll be fit.”

The manager will have new signing Liam O’Neil available after acquiring him from West Bromwich Albion. “We only expected to get him on loan,” admitted Saunders who added: “He had eight clubs after him but he chose us, he must have liked what he saw and what we are trying to do.”

O’Neil, who prefers a central midfield slot but he can also play at the back, will certainly start if Novak fails to be declared fit, but if Novak passes all the fitness tests, it’s difficult to see the new man stepping in ahead of Sam Morsy and Angel, so Drew Talbot, who’s done remarkably well in his recovery from injury, could be at risk at right back.

Saunders says no new bids have been lodged for Morsy and he said O’Neil wasn’t signed as insurance for if the skipper leaves, but with the transfer window starting to close, if an acceptable offer does tempt the club to sell, the opportunities of bringing in a new face are diminishing.

Spireites boss said of the window: “It should close before the first game. You build up in pre-season with your squad, start the games and you could then lose half of your squad.”

Millwall have signed Brian Carey’s former Wrexham colleague Carlos Edwards this week as the Lions seek their first points at home, two league losses and a defeat in the cup have been the rewards at the New Den to date as Spireites seek their first win at Millwall since 1981.