JIMMY Floyd Hasselbaink is optimistic that defender Michael Bostwick will be fit for close to the start of the League One season.
Bostwick was influential in the Brewers revival under Hasselbaink in the second half of last season but suffered a calf injury in April that forced him to sit out the last two weeks of the campaign and has had to wait to get his pre-season going.
But the manager has confirmed that both he and Kieran Wallace, the other long-term injury on the squad, are both on the mend.
Wallace suffered an ACL injury in February but is on track with his rehabilitation.
Hasselbaink said: “They have started running already. Kieran will be longer, but Michael is now ready to start his pre-season. He might not be ready for the first game of the season, but he will be close."
Otherwise, the squad is in good shape apart from the usual tweaks and niggles that Hasselbaink says is part of the pre-season training process as his squad builds up match fitness.
Hasselbaink says he expects League One to be tougher than ever with big clubs pushing the boat out to earn promotion.
“But we can’t worry about the others," he said: "We have to concentrate on ourselves. Other clubs will splash whatever cash they are going to splash. It’s not about being jealous, it’s about being the strongest and most competitive we can be.
“Yes, there are lots of big hitters but they are still in the same league as us and they are there for a reason.”