Whitbread injury the main worry

Zak Whitbread is touch and go for tonight's trip to Leicester.

The central defender suffered a painful bang to his back, particularly the side of his ribs, when he fell awkwardly after an aerial challenge during the game against Preston on Saturday.

Whitbread tried to run it off, but less than 10 minutes after the incident – early in the second half – had to be replaced by loan signing Rob Edwards.

'We need to wait and see how he is,' said manager Paul Lambert. 'He will be touch and go.'

Whitbread has started 10 of the 13 games City have played since the turn of the year, by far and away his best spell after an injury-hit 12 months at Carrow Road.

Edwards is the only genuine candidate to step in to partner Elliott Ward tonight, although chopping and changing his centre-halves is nothing new for Lambert.

'There has never been a spell, I don't think, where we have had two lads playing together for a length of time,' he said. 'Wardy has been out, then Leon (Barnett) has been out, Zak's been out, even Michael Nelson when he was here was out, so we have never really had that, but the lads have still done great.'

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Marc Tierney has had no after-effects from a knock on the ankle, but Chris Martin (hamstring) still has a few weeks before he can be considered.

If there was a bright note on the personnel front it was the return of Simon Lappin to training, 16 days after having his appendix removed.

'He trained yesterday,' said Lambert. 'That's the first day he has done since his operation, so he is a wee bit away. The lads that didn't played (on Saturday) they train and the other lads have a warm down.'

Andrew Surman started his second game after his three-month lay-off with the second knee injury of the campaign, and Lambert believes he is close to full match fitness.

'Hopefully the more games he plays he's going to get better and better,' Lambert said. 'When he plays he is one of these footballers who looks really elegant on the ball. He has been out a long time, but the last few games he has done really fine for us. I don't think he will be too far from it – but I think the way he is playing and the way he can play he will be a big plus for us.'