DANNY Byrne, who played for Runcorn in their last home match, will line up against them at Halton Stadium this Saturday.

The livewire striker has been recalled by Droylsden, the Linnets' last Nationwide North visitors of 2004.

But, ironically, Carl Furlong, who faced Runcorn when the clubs last met in September, is in the reckoning to fill the void left by Byrne's departure after a month's loan.

Ex-Altrincham striker Furlong was registered by Chris Lightfoot four days before the former manager was sacked in October, but he hasn't featured in any of the 13 games the Linnets have had since.

A hamstring injury the player had picked up before joining Runcorn for a second time, after a spell in their Conference days, proved more serious than first thought.

However, Furlong has now declared himself ready to return to action.

'We will have a look at Carl in training and see how fit he is,' said McDonald, without Ged Courtney this Saturday through a one-game ban.

'It a bonus to have Carl in contention and it has come at the right time with losing Danny Byrne and Ged.'

It looks like being a choice between Carl Furlong and Carl Rendell to partner Nicky Young up front.

Rendell has had a groin injury and has been nursed through recent weeks, spending much of the time as a sub.

'We have tried to be sensible with Carl and by doing that, have got minutes out of him in games when we might not have done,' added McDonald.

Byrne has been summoned back to Droylsden because Lutel James, the Bloods' own loan capture from Accrington, has broken a bone in his foot.

But McDonald said: 'I expected Danny to go back and wasn't surprised. I imagine he will be in Droylsden's 16 for Saturday but whether he will start I don't know because they have won their last three games.'

McDonald's side have lost their last four league games, although during that run they have won in the Conference Cup at Barrow.

The manager added: 'Trying to put it all in perspective, we have lost four on the bounce in the league but in two-and-a-half of those games have been the equal of, if not better than, our opponents.

'Hopefully we showed at Worcester on Saturday that whatever little problems we've had are behind us. I was gutted at getting beaten but have taken the positives which far outweighed the negatives.

'We've got to try to build on them now. We need a win desperately to turn it around and I am sure if we get one we can go on another little run like when we first joined the club.'

Steve Carragher should be available again after flu but Robbie Moore (groin) and Kieron Durkan (hamstring) will again be missing.

Peter Ellis' wear-and-tear ankle injury, with which he has struggled for the last year, may mean his appearances are limited between now and season's end.

Chris Lightfoot has signed for Marine as a player.