Forward Ryan Loft is hoping to use the Papa John’s Trophy encounter as vital time to obtain match minutes as he steps up his return from injury.
The former Leicester City frontman last started a game on the second weekend of the season, when he sustained an innocuous cheekbone injury which kept him out of action for seven weeks.
Returning as a substitute at Newport at the weekend, Loft states the team will also be looking to bounce back following the result in South Wales.
Speaking to iFollow Iron, he said: “It was definitely disappointing (at the weekend). It’s another game where we’ve conceded too many goals. We’ve reflected on that and picked out on the things we can improve on, and it’s up to us to put that right.
“For me, it was nice to get back out on the pitch, but obviously frustrating because we lost. On a personal note, it’s good to be back and hopefully I can help the team going forward.”
Loft’s injury came as a result of a clash of heads with Rochdale’s Aaron Morley back in August, with the Iron frontman coming off worse in the collision.
As a precaution, spectators will see the 24-year-old wearing a mask in his upcoming games to protect his still-healing cheekbone.
“It was really frustrating because it was one of those injuries that could have been avoided,” he continued.
“It wasn’t like a muscle injury, and it was more frustrating than anything. I feel like I could have done more things earlier, but you’ve got to listen to the right people.
“Going into the season, I felt like I was fit, strong and sharp, so it’s been a bit of a knock for me. It’s hard watching on the sidelines because you can’t affect what’s happening on the pitch.
“It was weird (to wear a mask) at first. The more I’m wearing it, the more I’m getting used to it. Luckily, I’ve not had too many problems with it now I’ve got my bearings.”
In terms of his fitness, the only thing Loft feels he will be lacking is match sharpness. Due to the nature of the injury, his sidelining hasn’t meant he’s been sat idle during his recovery period, as he maintained his base level of fitness.
If selected, Loft will also be looking to use the Rotherham encounter to build up those match minutes and rediscover his early form from pre-season.
“I’ve been training throughout, doing lots of running, and I’ve been back in full training with full contact for over a week now,” he added.
“The most important thing is my game fitness. I got half an hour the other day so hopefully if I add more minutes to that, I’ll be fine.
“We don’t know what the manager is going to do in terms of selection, but if I get picked to play, we’ll be using it to most importantly win the game, but also for me to get more minutes.
“We can use it as a positive that we’ve got a game in the Trophy.”
See much more from Ryan Loft on iFollow Iron.