Preview: Middlesbrough vs. Millwall

© Edmund Boyden
© Edmund Boyden

CAPTAIN Danny Shittu is expected to return to the fold for Millwall’s televised match against Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium on Saturday.

Shittu has recovered from both an ankle injury and, more recently, a bout of flu after missing the FA Cup victory over Luton Town and the heavy midweek defeat to Peterborough.

The Nigerian’s return is a timely one with boss Kenny Jackett already forced to shake up his defence as a result of Shane Lowry’s one-match suspension following his sending-off against Posh.

With Jack Smith (ankle) sidelined, Scott Malone is favourite to deputise at left-back although Jackett could move Mark Beevers across from centre-half after impressing against Aston Villa in the FA Cup.

Derby loanee Nathan Tyson is poised to return to the match-day squad having completed a week of training after recovering from the ankle injury he sustained on his debut a month ago.

Chris Taylor, who stepped up his recovery from a knee injury with a 70-minute run-out for the U21s against QPR on Friday, will not travel to Teeside but should be fit to face Leeds next week.

Middlesbrough welcome the Lions to the north-east in the midst of an injury crisis, with several key players set to miss out.

Defenders Justin Hoyte (hip), Stuart Paranaby (hamstring) and Jonathan Woodgate (calf) are all unavailable, while forward Lukas Jutkiewicz is also ruled out with an ankle injury.

Manager Tony Mowbray is sweating on the fitness of defender Seb Hines (knee) and midfielders Andy Halliday (ankle) and Kieron Dyer (hamstring), who are all rated as doubtful.

But Mowbray is hopeful that forward Scott McDonald will be fully fit after a back problem.