Middlesbrough duo Marcus Browne and Paddy McNair will miss Friday’s home fixture with Stoke in the Sky Bet Championship due to suspension.
The pair received straight red cards in the 3-1 loss at Swansea last weekend and will serve three-match bans, starting with the visit of the Potters.
Boro manager Jonathan Woodgate was able to welcome top goalscorer Britt Assombalonga back to training on Thursday after a recent ankle injury and he may make the bench.
Goalkeeper Darren Randolph, Ryan Shotton, Anfernee Dijksteel and George Friend remain sidelined for the encounter at the Riverside, though, between two sides battling relegation.
Stoke captain Ryan Shawcross is not expected to feature at Middlesbrough, but could return for the Boxing Day clash at home to Sheffield Wednesday.
He suffered a groin injury in the early stages of his comeback match – following a broken leg in the summer – and had to be withdrawn after 16 minutes of the 3-0 victory over Luton on December 10.
The problem was only minor for Shawcross and he should return soon, but boss Michael O’Neill has not been feeling well himself this week.
Stoke’s manager had to cancel his scheduled press conference on Thursday after suffering with illness.