Darren Pratley set to hand Charlton a fitness boost – but duo now expected to miss out on Gillingham clash

BY RICHARD CAWLEY

Darren Pratley is set to be fit for Charlton’s home game against Gillingham tomorrow – but manager Lee Bowyer had hoped to have a triple boost. 

The Addicks boss was expecting George Lapslie (concussion) and Jamie Ward (thigh) to also be available for selection. 

Lapslie had been ruled out of last weekend’s derby win over AFC Wimbledon and now has had a further setback. 

“We were doing a little passing drill and George ended up slipping over where the pitch was so wet,” explained Bowyer. 

“He got up all dizzy and seeing stars. So that concussion still seems to be there a little bit. 

“We let him stay at home on Wednesday. I really don’t think he’ll be fit. I also think it will be a little bit early for Jamie.” 

Josh Cullen is still a month away from a return from a dislocated shoulder. 

Bowyer says striker Igor Vetokele – out with the same issue – will not be back until the end of February. 

Karlan Grant (hamstring) could return against Coventry City on Boxing Day. 

“We are looking at that date or the 29th,” said Bowyer. “We can’t rush him because we haven’t got strength in depth in that area. We can’t take a risk and he is out for another month if he breaks down.” 

Bowyer is an admirer of Gills striker Tom Eaves, who has scored 15 goals in 27 matches. 

Coventry City’s Dominic Hyam and Gillingham’s Tom Eaves during the Sky Bet League One match against Gillingham.

“He is very good,” said the Addicks manager. “He’s a strong, powerful lad and caused us problems last season. He scores all different types of goals as well. 

“He is up [contractually] in the summer and will go somewhere.

“They couldn’t let him go, even if he just keeps them in the league for another year it will be worth keeping hold of him.”

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