Shakers turn to Hughes
Mark Hughes is poised to return to the Bury starting line-up as the financially stricken npower League One outfit look to avoid having their relegation confirmed against fellow strugglers Oldham.
Hughes, 26, last featured for the Shakers in January before joining Accrington on loan, making five appearances, but suffered a calf injury that it was initially feared would end his season.
The defender will be pressed into action after Efe Sodje collected his 10th booking of the season - three of those accrued during a loan stint at Barrow - in last weekend's 2-0 loss at Hartlepool that means defeat to Latics will condemn Kevin Blackwell's men to the fourth tier.
Craig Fagan received a straight red card at Victoria Park and, although Tom Soares (hamstring) has resumed training once more, Blackwell is once again facing the prospect of not naming a full complement of substitutes due to a raft of long-term absentees.
"The situation with injuries is dire," he said.
"Sodje's out suspended and so is Fagan so we might have a couple on the bench. Tom Soares is okay, he's trained (on Thursday)."
Oldham boss Lee Johnson will assess the fitness of experienced defender Cliff Byrne ahead of the derby clash.
The former Scunthorpe man was replaced by James Tarkowski before half time in Tuesday night's 2-0 defeat to Preston following a groin problem, but Johnson is hopeful he can be included.
"It's just his muscle spasmed in the groin," the manager explained. "Hopefully he'll be okay. It (the substitution) was a precautionary measure really."
Top scorer Jose Baxter misses out after collecting his 10th booking of the season at Deepdale and activating a two-match ban.
Youngster Chris Sutherland suffered his latest setback in a season beset by injuries when he sustained a hamstring injury playing for the reserves in midweek.