NEWPORT County AFC manager Justin Edinburgh admits he may be forced back into the transfer market if injuries continue to hit his small squad.

The County boss saw his side return to the top of the Blue Square Bet Premier with a hard-fought 2-1 win at Tamworth on Saturday thanks to goals from Ismail Yakubu and Aaron O’Connor.

But victory came at a cost as both Tony James and O’Connor failed to finish the match because of injury.

Top scorer O’Connor, whose winner on Saturday was his 10th goal of the season, was forced off with severe cramp.

He should be fit to face Ebbsfleet United at Rodney Parade tomorrow night but central defender James is out with a knee injury.

Asked about James’ injury, Edinburgh said: “It’s not serious but it may be a game or two.

“We’ll assess it over the next day or two but he’s a doubt for Tuesday.

“We’ve got a very good replacement in Andrew Hughes but once we assess it and if Tony is going to be longer than we expect then we may have to look at that (bringing someone else in) because we don’t have any other central defenders.

“I believe the chairman will back me as and when he needs to.”

Newport-born defender Byron Anthony, a former Wales under-21 international, is a free agent after being released by Hereford United last month.

The good news for County is that midfielder Lee Evans, who has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury picked up at AFC Telford United, is back in contention to face Ebbsfleet.

“Lee has done some work in training and if he has no reaction from that he’ll take a full part on Monday with a view to being ready for Tuesday,” said Edinburgh.

“Conor Washington and Jake Harris are ready to go as well,” he added after leaving both out on Saturday.