FORGOTTEN man Lee Holmes is in contention to make his first Saints start since January for the trip to Sheffield Wednesday.

Holmes has not featured in the starting line-up of a Saints side since a 2-0 win over Stockport at St Mary’s in January, but has forced his way back into contention under new boss Nigel Adkins.

The winger has struggled to hold down a regular place in the team since his first season at the club, with injuries playing their part as well as falling out of favour for periods of time with previous boss Alan Pardew.

But with options currently more limited in terms of the wide positions, it has given him a chance to impress, which he has taken.

Holmes came on for the final 18 minutes of Saints’ goalless draw at home to Colchester and made a big difference.

He played in his traditional left sided midfield role and helped turn the game in Saints’ favour with the width that he offered.

That performance earned him a lot of praise from the Saints faithful and has put him at the forefront of Adkins’ mind for the trip to Hillsborough.

Adkins has plenty to ponder this week, including who could make way for Holmes if he chooses to stick with the 4-4-2 formation.

Jason Puncheon and Alex Chamberlain have occupied the wide berths in recent games, with Adkins switching the left-footed Puncheon to the left-hand side while Chamberlain has been on the right.

Saints are conscious of not burning out 17-year-old Chamberlain on his first run of games, but his injection of pace and a bit of attacking freedom is something they would miss if it were removed.

Daily Echo: For a video of the top stories in today's Daily Echo, click the front page.

Puncheon, meanwhile, has looked out of sorts in recently.

It was he who was withdrawn for Holmes against Colchester so his place may be under threat.

Adkins is in the early days of trying to assess what he’s got in his squad, what he would like to add and to communicate his ideas and plans to his new team.

He joined the club right at the start of a week that included a trip to MK Dons for a rearranged fixture and then a home game against unbeaten Colchester.

However, with a clear week to enjoy this week he can start to put his own stamp on things and try to turn around the dismal run of five games without a win, or even a goal.