Lincoln boss Steve Tilson could include Luke Howell in his squad to face Port Vale.

The midfielder, who recently made 10 appearances during a loan spell with the club, has signed a deal until the end of the season after leaving MK Dons by mutual consent.

Tilson will also check on the fitness of Mustapha Carayol ahead of the clash.

Carayol played no part in Tuesday's 2-1 win over Cheltenham after picking up a knock against Stockport last Saturday.

Defender Gavin Hoyte is rated as doubtful due to a hamstring problem and Clark Keltie could miss out again with a thigh injury.

Congolese Patrick Kanyuka penned terms at the Imps this week but cannot play until his international clearance goes through.

Port Vale will include Tom Pope in the squad for the trip.

The 25-year-old striker has arrived on a month's loan from Rotherham and will go straight into the squad.

Jim Gannon will also welcome back captain Gareth Owen and midfielder Gary Roberts.

Centre-back Owen missed Tuesday`s goalless draw with Barnet as he served a one-match ban having seen red against Cheltenham last weekend, with Kris Taylor coming back in at left-back and Lee Collins moving across.

Roberts, meanwhile, was also forced to miss out as he served the second game of a two-match suspension for collecting 10 bookings, but both he and Owen are expected to make swift returns to Jim Gannon`s starting XI at Sincil Bank.

New loan signing Exodus Geohaghon is still waiting for his full debut having enjoyed a 21 minute cameo in midweek, with Gannon opting to play the towering central defender in the midfield role he used to deploy him during his time at Peterborough.

Forward Sean Rigg (thigh) will again be assessed but leading scorer Marc Richards (thigh) and midfielder Doug Loft (calf) continue to miss out.

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