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Gary Madine faces fitness fight ahead of MK Dons clash

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Wanderers will give Gary Madine every chance to face MK Dons this weekend as the club’s top-scorer tries to overcome a groin problem.

The Whites striker limped out in the second half of Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Southend United after receiving a kick on the inside of his thigh.

A similar injury kept him out for the last couple of months of last season but the club’s medical staff are confident he is not facing an extended spell out of action.

Madine has been one of Phil Parkinson’s key performers so far, netting three times in his first six League One starts and equalling his best-ever start to a campaign, achieved in a Sheffield Wednesday shirt in 2011/12.

Wanderers hope to have Max Clayton back in training within a month after an exploratory operation on his troublesome knee was hailed a complete success.

The 22-year-old has not featured since pre-season after complaining of swelling in his knee but a minor procedure to trim some loose cartilage should see him return to Lostock by the start of October.

Zach Clough is also heading in the right direction after a hamstring injury and has stepped up his workload in training.

The academy graduate has featured just three times for Wanderers this season but was forced off in his first start, against Fleetwood Town, with a similar injury which made him miss a handful of friendlies over the summer. As a result, Wanderers are unlikely to rush him back into first team action.

Parkinson’s attacking options have been boosted considerably since the transfer deadline, with Sammy Ameobi, James Henry and Keshi Anderson all now vying for a first team spot.

Though all three deals are loans – Ameobi and Henry until January and Anderson until the end of the season – the Wanderers boss has not ruled out the possibility of signing them on a permanent basis in the future.

Both Henry and Ameobi are out of contract next summer at Wolves and Newcastle United respectively but Parkinson admits it is still too early to be considering their future.

“They have all got their differences in the way the deals were structured and, of course, it will depend very much on how they do or whether they enjoy their time here,” he told The Bolton News.

“But from my point of view, it’s always good to get loans where there is a potential of taking it forward.”


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