Ronnie Moore must contend with a host of injury problems as Tranmere prepare to host Portsmouth and defend their position at the npower League One summit.
Captain James Wallace joined the walking wounded during last weekend's FA Cup second-round triumph over Chesterfield when he suffered medial ligament damage.
Max Power is pushing for a start in midfield in his place, while on-loan Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Liam Palmer's return to availability further eases the burden in that area.
On-loan Middlesbrough defender Ben Gibson is a doubt due to a muscular strain, meaning Ash Taylor could come in to partner veteran Ian Goodison at centre-back.
Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro (broken metatarsal) and Abdulai Bell-Baggie (knee) remain on the sidelines, but top scorer Jake Cassidy is eligible once more after parent club Wolves ruled him out of cup action last week.
A run of two points from a possible nine mean Rovers only retain the top spot they have held since the opening weeks of the season by virtue of goal difference from Doncaster.
Simon Eastwood is set to start in goal for Portsmouth.
Eastwood will make his first appearance in a month after Alex Cisak, who played in the 1-1 draw with Coventry a fortnight ago, was recalled early from his loan spell by parent club Oldham.
Caretaker boss Guy Whittingham has a fully-fit squad after Lee Williamson and Mustapha Dumbuya shook off injuries.
Midfielder Williamson had been struggling with a calf problem and full-back Dumbuya suffered a knee injury at Coventry but both have trained this week without any problems.
Gabor Gyepes sat out against the Sky Blues after suffering heart palpitations but the Hungarian defender has been given the all-clear by doctors and is also available to Whittingham.