Alan Irvine has challenged Akpo Sodje to earn a new contract at Sheffield Wednesday after confirming Jermaine Johnson is out for six weeks.
Sodje is now back at Hillsborough after a loan spell at Charlton Athletic and he has been among the substitutes for Irvine's first three games in charge.
Irvine concedes the striker could leave Hillsborough before the close of the transfer window, but the Owls boss also wants Sodje to prove his worth at his current club.
"The lad is looking to secure his long-term future," Irvine told the Sheffield Star.
"If somebody comes in with what he thinks is a good offer, it may well be that we have no choice but to take that.
"At the moment, that's not happened, so he will continue to be in our plans and to try to earn a contract here."
Meanwhile, Irvine expects to be without Johnson for the next six weeks after the winger suffered a hamstring injury in the win over Blackpool.
He added: "We've had JJ scanned and he could be out for six weeks. It's a big blow for us and him.
"He was playing extremely well. We need all our players fit; when we knew that his situation could leave us short we moved to negotiate something."