Glenn: Don In My Thoughts

Glenn Roeder says that Don Hutchison has come very much into his thinking as he prepares the players for the trip to Leeds United at the weekend.

Although Glenn didn't see Don's midweek performance for the reserves against Leicester City, he has been given a glowing report from Roger Cross and says: "I watched Leeds on Tuesday evening, so I wasn't at the reserve game, but Roger told me that Don Hutchison scored a fantastic goal from the halfway line when he volleyed the ball back with great technique over the goalkeeper.

"So I am assuming the ball has travelled somewhere between 50 and 60 metres to nestle into the net.

"I was also told he missed a penalty but I will have to forgive him for that.

"Don Hutchison had by far his best game since returning from injury and Roger said he really looked sharp - and very motivated - throughout the game.

"He wants to get back in the team, he wants to be part of the fight, and he has had the extra boost that Bertie Vogts has selected him for the friendly game against the Republic of Ireland next week.

"It is all good news for Don because he has had a tough year, what with his cruciate ligament repair, and of course the recent loss of his father.

"It has not been a good time for Hutch at all, so it was great to hear that he played so well in the reserves.

"He now comes into contention for Saturday at least as far as the bench is concerned - I would like to get him on the bench and on the field at the appropriate time."

Glenn believes, like Don himself, that the fact that he hasn't been involved in the struggle could be of benefit.

"It is another fresh player that hasn't had to have the pressure on his shoulders all season of fighting to get out of the bottom three," he says.

"Don is now really moving on to the fitness levels that we want him to have and that he needs to have."

Glenn is hoping for a hat trick of wins for the club at Leeds after the youth team win on Wednesday following hot on the heels of that reserve victory, and he adds: "Roger was pleased with everyone's determination to hold on to the win but he was also pleased with David Noble, who had his first game for us since signing from Arsenal."

"In the end we effectively had nine players. We had young Darren Blewitt sent off after 10 or 12 minutes, then young Ayo Akinsete was a passenger for the last 12 minutes because he pulled his hamstring badly.

"So to hold on to a decent win in those circumstances is pleasing."