Newcastle Jets coach Craig Deans has confirmed Jason Hoffman will miss Sunday’s match in Melbourne due to a groin complaint.
The veteran defender sat out last week’s nil-all draw against Brisbane and will again be unavailable to face Victory this week.
“Hoffy, again still not 100 percent, so it’s not worth taking a risk,” Deans said.
“AP (Apostolos Stamatelopoulos) has a tight back… the field is a lot softer here than it is in Adelaide. He’s not worth the risk.
“We will give them til next Tuesday to get ready.”
The luxury of being in a position to rest Hoffman highlights the depth coach Deans has at his disposal, especially with Matt Millar poised to make his return after re-joining the Club on loan from Shrewsbury Town.
“He’s better off for his experience in England,” Deans said of Millar.
“He’s had two good weeks of training behind him.
“He brings a good attacking option to the team, bit of running and bit of power.”
After missing last two weeks with an ankle complaint, Ramy Najjarine is poised to make his comeback.
Whether he will start in place of Luka Prso remains to be decided.
Prso has done a wonderful job in the starting side but coach Deans is unsure whether the young Socceroo will keep the responsibility on Sunday.
“They both bring a different perspective to the game,” he said of the pair.
“It’s a matter of looking at the opposition and who will cause them the most problems.
“It’s a tough call. It’s a nice problem to have and I’m sure the one that misses out will understand.”