Sunderland boss Roy Keane says he is unlikely to risk Kenwyne Jones from the start against Stoke City on Wednesday night.
Jones marked his return from a knee injury with a substitute's appearance in Saturday's Wear-Tyne derby win over Newcastle United.
Keane was impressed with the striker's outing in the 2-1 success, but believes there is no need to rush the Trinidad & Tobago international back into the starting line-up.
"It was important for us just to get him on the pitch and you saw what it did to our supporters, it gave them a big lift and also lifted his own team-mates," said Keane on Sky Sports News.
"It probably affected Newcastle's back four a little bit because he's a handful, but whether he's done enough to start the game on Wednesday is very much doubtful as it's still early days for him and there's no need to take unnecessary risks.
"We'll have a look at him again as we constantly look at players in training for how their match fitness is coming up, but he's a very good option for us on the bench."
The Black Cats chief also believes that Jones has bulked up during over four months on the sidelines with the injury suffered in a friendly against England.
Keane added: "I think he's certainly toned up a lot more and I think he is slightly bigger.
"He certainly has come back stronger and looks bigger, and that's a big plus for us.
"It was something we lacked in a lot of games, particularly last year, not just Kenwyne but there is more physical strength in our team."