Barnsley fans’ long wait to see Cauley Woodrow pull on a Reds shirt could end tomorrow.
For the summer signing from Fulham has been sidelined since injuring himself in one of his first training sessions at Oakwell.
He is close. He is really fit, but you could see in the sprints and duels he is 80-90 per cent, maybe 95. That is normal. Right now, we let him train and not think about the injury.Barnsley’s Andreas Winkler
The 23-year-old signing was a major coup for the Tykes, but the striker has been forced to watch from the sidelines for the opening 15 games as Barnsley embarked on life in League One.
But after returning to first-team training, Tykes boss Daniel Stendel looks set to include him as a substitute for tomorrow’s visit of Southend United.
“He is in contention to play, but you can see in the training that he is not 100 per cent,” said Tykes assistant head coach Andreas Winkler.
“That is normal after such a long time. A muscle injury is totally different to a sprain.
“We can bring him on the bench if he’s in his mind or head 100 per cent.
“He is close. He is really fit, but you could see in the sprints and duels he is 80-90 per cent, maybe 95. That is normal. Right now, we let him train and not think about the injury.”
The youthful Reds team currently sit fourth in League One, last week’s win over Bristol Rovers preventing a third successive loss.
And they have the chance to put pressure on leading trio Portsmouth, Peterborough and Sunderland when they face Southend at Oakwell.
“The younger you are the less experience you have,” Winkler said. “You use these matches, these situations, to learn from it. We don’t have one kind of leader, we have many leaders, but we enjoy working this way.
“They (Southend) have their style of football, they play very directly, but also have good ball possession.
“I think they are better than their results, much better, and they are a strong side.”