Academy starlets Barker and Henry to be in squad for Bristol Rovers clash

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Youngsters Charlie Barker and Aaron Henry will be in the Charlton squad on Saturday according to Charlton Manager Lee Bowyer.

The Addicks are without a host of first team players, through a combination of injury and suspension, meaning the 17-year-olds will travel with the first team ahead of the game against Bristol Rovers.

The Addicks remain without long-term absentees Akin Famewo, Ryan Inniss and Alfie Doughty, as well as Ben Watson, who sustained an injury earlier this month. Andrew Shinnie and Marcus Maddison are nearing returns but Saturday is likely to come too soon while experienced pair Jason Pearce and Darren Pratley will miss the game through suspension.

Speaking at his pre-game press conference Bowyer said: “Charlie Barker and Aaron Henry will be travelling with us this weekend. We are low in midfield and low at centre half, so the pair of them will be travelling with us at the weekend. They’ll be in the squad at the weekend.”

With the injuries and suspensions Bowyer revealed Chris Gunter may well move into centre half to partner Deji Oshilaja.

He said: “If you look defensively we have one centre half now. Gunter will have to slide across [to centre back], Adam Matthews will come in [at right back]. The defense picks itself. In midfield we only have four available, that is if you start them all. 

“In an ideal world I would like to bring Jake [Forster-Caskey] out, because Jake is another one of those players that if he goes game after game he can pick up an injury, but I can’t because for me he is our best midfielder at the moment. 

“The team picks itself. We’re limited with the players we have got at the moment, through suspension, through injuries. This month is going to be tough, we’ve got a lot of games this month, so the sooner we get people back the better.”

The Addicks take on Bristol Rovers on Saturday in what is likely to be challenging weather conditions.

Bowyer said: “Talking about conditions, Saturday would be a game for Pratley but he is not available, otherwise he would be playing but it is what it is. Saturday is going to be a tough game, they’ve had some good results this season and we’re going to have to match them physically.” 

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