Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew is hopeful that a number of key players will return to his starting line up for next weekend's FA Cup final date with 11-time winners Manchester United amid a string of fitness concerns.
The Eagles finished a taxing 2015-16 Premier League season on a sour note yesterday (15 May), when a much-changed side suffered an emphatic 4-1 defeat to Europa League qualifiers Southampton at St Mary's.
First-choice centre-back Scott Dann was excused that drubbing on the south coast in preparation for Wembley and Joe Ledley was absent as a result of a fractured fibula sustained against Stoke City that has left him as a major doubt to feature for Wales at Euro 2016.
Influential midfielder Yohan Cabaye also missed the tie, as did pacey wingers Yannick Bolasie and Wilfried Zaha. However, Pardew is optimistic that trio will recover in time for Saturday (21 May), along with semi-final hero Connor Wickham.
"Of course we protected some today, but we do have some concerns about a couple," Pardew was quoted as saying by the official Palace website prior to a scheduled media day.
"We rested Scott Dann, but the biggest concern is Yohan Cabaye although I think he will be OK and Connor Wickham has rolled his ankle, but Zaha and Bolasie should be fine. My experience though is, as the final gets nearer, the injuries certainly start to clear up."
Manchester United vs Crystal Palace is a repeat of the 1990 showpiece, when Mark Hughes and Ian Wright notched a brace each to force a thrilling 3-3 draw at the old Wembley.
Alex Ferguson's team emerged 1-0 winners from the replay thanks to a second-half strike from Lee Martin. That remains the south London club's one and only FA Cup final appearance to date.
Palace have a clear week to prepare for the match, but their opponents must first navigate a rescheduled top-flight clash with Bournemouth on Tuesday night (17 May). That contest was originally supposed to take place at 15.00 BST on the final day of the campaign, only for it to be delayed and then abandoned due to the discovery of a suspicious package in the north-west quadrant at Old Trafford.
Fans, media and staff were all safely evacuated before a bomb disposal unit carried out a controlled explosion. It emerged last night that the offending item was a non-explosive device accidentally left behind by a private company following the training of dog handlers and a sub contractor. It was mistakenly accounted for at the end of the exercise.