Southend boss Paul Sturrock will be without the experience of captain Craig Easton for the visit of Morecambe to Roots Hall.
The midfielder suffered a calf strain against Northampton and a scan has shown it to be slightly worse than first thought.
Michael Timlin, a midweek loan signing from Swindon, is expected to go straight into the starting line-up as a like-for-like replacement for Easton.
Former Chelsea midfielder Anthony Grant is set to battle it out with centre-back Chris Barker for the captain`s armband, although Sturrock has indicated that he already knows who his skipper will be.
Other than the absence of Easton, Sturrock is unlikely to tinker with his starting line-up when his side look to return to winning ways following last week`s defeat at Northampton.
Tony Capaldi could make his Morecambe debut after joining the club on a free transfer.
The Northern Ireland defender should go straight into the Shrimps line-up, although he is waiting for international clearance from the League of Wales.
McIlroy is boosted by the return of left-back Laurence Wilson after he served a one-match ban during last weekend's 1-1 draw with Chesterfield.
Yet striker Phil Jevons is set for another week on the sidelines after suffering a head injury against Oxford a fortnight ago.
Paul Mullin is likely to stay up front and Scott Brown, who scored on his debut last week, is set to keep his place in midfield as the Shrimps go in search of their first win of the season.
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.