Luton Town boss Nathan Jones is hopeful that attacker Admiral Muskwe will be back with the squad in time for this weekend’s trip to Sheffield United after flying back from the Africa Cup of Nations tournament.
The 23-year-old has missed Luton’s last three games against Harrogate, Bournemouth and Reading following his participation in the tournament for Zimbabwe.
An unused sub in the first game, a 1-0 defeat to Senegal, Muskwe then came on for the final 12 minutes of the 2-1 loss against Malawi.
That meant the Warriors couldn’t qualify from the group stages, as the former Leicester forward started the final fixture with Guinea, playing 75 minutes and grabbing an assist in the 2-1 victory.
Jones confirmed he is now looking for the summer signing t be available for the visit to Bramall Lane tomorrow, saying: ““Yes, we are, they had a good last game but they’ve gone out so he’s back with us and hopefully available.
“He’s a bit more game ready, so hopefully he slept on the plane as he’ll be straight into training.”
Although Zimbabwe didn’t make it into the last 16, Muskwe was proud of his country’s displays, tweeting: “Our performances didn’t warrant leaving the tournament so soon.
“Nonetheless I’m grateful to have represented my country in my first AFCON!
“To the nations people I’m thankful for the support.
“We promise to be back stronger and better.”
With Luton now in a congested run of fixtures, playing 10 times in 35 days, Jones was able to use his bench during the 2-0 win at Reading on Saturday, taking off Jordan Clark, Cameron Jerome and Allan Campbell in the second half.
He is wary about over-playing 11-goal frontman Elijah Adebayo in the upcoming weeks, the striker in outstanding form will be a huge part of any push for the end of season play-offs.
With that in mind, the manager admits he will have to call on everyone in these next month, saying: “It’s about using the squad to win the game.
“Cameron did a big shift on the weekend and another big shift, so it’s important to bring people off the bench.
“We’ve got a bit of life in that area, we’ve got Admiral coming back now, we’ve got Harry (Cornick) coming back and hopefully Danny (Hylton), so that can alleviate a little bit because Elijah is doing big, big shifts constantly as well.
“We’re strong in the midfield areas, defensively we’re good in terms of numbers, so we need to do that, we need to keep that fresh because the schedule is relentless.
“It doesn’t lighten up as we go again to Sheffield United and then Bristol City, and then home again to Blackburn, then we go to Swansea and then it’s the FA Cup, so it’s pretty much full on.
“I’m really pleased we started these games as we want points on the board, we’re playing catch but we’re got two games in and we’ve managed to jump into the top half, with games in hand as well.
“It shows we’re in a decent place, away from home again on the weekend so a tough, tough schedule.”