Timely return for Etuhu

120497-348_BLACKPOOL_POMPEY_SR_11/2/12'Action from Blackpool vs Pompey at Bloomfield Road.'Kelvin Etuhu on the ball.''Picture:Steve Reid (120497-348)
120497-348_BLACKPOOL_POMPEY_SR_11/2/12'Action from Blackpool vs Pompey at Bloomfield Road.'Kelvin Etuhu on the ball.''Picture:Steve Reid (120497-348)
Pompey midfielder Carl Baker Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett: Baker has Pompey future

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Kelvin Etuhu has extended his stay with Pompey.

And Blues boss Michael Appleton is hopeful he’ll be one of a group of players returning to the equation for the Fratton Park clash against Middlesbrough this Saturday.

Midfielder Etuhu is currently playing for Appleton’s side on a month-to-month agreement.

The Football League have to give permission for the 23-year-old to extend his stay each time his contract expires.

And they have given the green light for that to happen again.

Now the hope is former Manchester City trainee Etuhu can get over the hamstring injury that has kept him out for the past two games to boost his team’s threadbare options.

Appleton said: ‘Kelvin has signed for another month.

‘He’s got that hamstring injury he picked up.

‘He was struggling a bit before Ipswich.

‘It’s a small tear and it isn’t quite right.’

David Norris returned to the first-team picture on Saturday after his hernia operation, coming on as a second-half substitute against Leeds.

The midfielder provided a boost after entering the fray as a second-half substitute.

Liam Lawrence is confident of overcoming his calf problem in time to return against Middlesbrough

Meanwhile, Luke Varney is making good progress from the knee injury which has kept him out since December.

Appleton is glad his team don’t have a midweek clash to allow them a clear run to give players a chance of returning on Saturday.

He said: ‘David coming back is a big boost because he was a key part of things before he got injured.

‘The more minutes we can get out of him the better.

‘It’s quite a good week for us not to have a midweek game.

‘People like Chuck (Norris) have the chance to get a good week’s training under his belt.

‘If we can get Luke anywhere near the first team training that will give us a boost.’