Captain Dean Hammond is expected to return for Colchester United at Huddersfield Town tonight.

The combative midfielder missed the U’s 1-1 draw with Hartlepool United last weekend with a calf injury.

Hammond has been hindered by the injury for the last fortnight but had been playing through the pain barrier.

However, Colchester boss Paul Lambert decided not to risk him against Pools, with one eye on the U’s hectic forthcoming schedule.

Youngster Anthony Wordsworth was handed his first U’s league start since October in Hammond’s absence.

However, the former Brighton and Hove Albion player is set to return to the fold for this evening’s trip to the Galpharm Stadium.

Boss Lambert said: “We hope Dean is going to be ok.

“We couldn’t take a risk on him against Hartlepool in case he has done some damage and then be without him for a while.

“It’s something he’s had for a couple of weeks and you just can’t take a chance on things like that.”