On-loan Stoke striker John Carew should be back for the clash with Chelsea next weekend after his withdrawal from the Norway squad.
The 31-year-old forward has a back injury and will not play for his country against near neighbours Demark in a Euro 2012 qualifier.
Potters manager Tony Pulis is pleased with the decision to withdraw Carew from international duty and he expects him to be back for the Premier League encounter with the Blues, having not played since 5th March.
"I know he wouldn't have been fit to play for us this weekend, so it didn't really surprise me he was pulled out of Norway's game," Pulis said in The Sentinel.
"We are expecting John back at the club next Thursday as things stand, and I'd be disappointed if he wasn't close to being OK again.
"Everybody has seen how well the big fella has done since joining us on loan from Villa in January - on and off the pitch.
"He's a big character, and with a wealth of experience we will find useful with so many big games coming up between now and the end of the season."
Meanwhile, Pulis is hoping Glenn Whelan will come back from the international break with the Republic of Ireland in good condition after his recent return to the starting line-up.
"I'd expect Glenn to play the full game against Macedonia, but hopefully he won't be doing much next Tuesday in the friendly," added Pulis.
"His attitude for us has been first-class. He's come back and done well for us, but sometimes players do need a break.
"Look at Jon Walters. Let's not forget he was out for a few games, and look what he's done since he came back."