Hoolahan returns to training

Paul Lambert says he is hopeful of being able to name midfielder Wes Hoolahan in his side before the end of the season. Hoolahan's absence with a thigh strain has provoked something of a conspiracy theory - outside the confines of the Colney training centre at least.

Paul Lambert says he is hopeful of being able to name midfielder Wes Hoolahan in his side before the end of the season.

Hoolahan's absence with a thigh strain has provoked something of a conspiracy theory - outside the confines of the Colney training centre at least.

Although the Irishman was on the training field on Thursday, the City boss will wait until today before he makes a decision ahead of the game at Charlton.

“He did a bit of running yesterday so we will see how he feels this morning,” said Lambert. “I have to wait and see how he's feeling himself.

“He's doing okay, he's doing alright.”

The fear among supporters is that Hoolahan is out for the rest of the season, although Lambert played that down yesterday.

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“Not at the minute,” he said. “I'm hopeful, but I can't tell how anybody is going to heal. It's just monitoring him really.”

Lambert has no new injury concerns ahead of the trip to SE7, where he will be without leading scorer Grant Holt who completes a two-match suspension.