MIDFIELDER Joss Labadie is set to return to action at Cheltenham Town tomorrow night and he’s hoping to be fit enough to help Newport County AFC win next week’s FA Cup replay against Wrexham.

Labadie, who has been sidelined since March with an anterior cruciate ligament knee injury, is expecting to play 20 minutes in the Checkatrade Trophy tie at Whaddon Road.

And, if he can also feature in Saturday’s League Two match at Swindon Town, he hopes to be able to make an impact against Wrexham at Rodney Parade next Tuesday.

“The knee is very good,” said Labadie, who was part of the BT Sport punditry team for the 0-0 draw at The Racecourse Ground at the weekend.

“I’m hoping to get 20 minutes against Cheltenham in the Checkatrade and hopefully it goes well.”

Reflecting on the disappointing display in the FA Cup second-round match, Labadie said: “The manager won’t be too chuffed with the performance but it’s the FA Cup and the lower league teams always seem to raise their game.

“Hats off to their defenders, they’ve had a good game and our strikers were a bit quiet but we’ve got another crack at it.

“We’re still in the hat, like Wrexham, and hopefully we can get the win at Rodney Parade.

“Hopefully I’ll be ready for the replay,” he added.

“There’s a few other as well. There’s Matty Dolan, Scot Bennett, Robbie [Willmott] – there’s loads to come back and hopefully they can make the difference in the replay.”

Labadie was instrumental in County’s run to the fourth-round last season when they beat Leeds United and took Tottenham Hotspur to a Wembley replay after a 1-1 draw at Rodney Parade.

“We came very close [to beating Spurs] last season,” he said. “It was a great experience for myself and the lads and we gave a good account of ourselves.

“It means everything to the club financially [to make the third round] and hopefully we can do that again.

“We would have been in a bit of a pickle if we didn’t get through to the fourth-round last year.”

The Exiles will share ball number 47 with Wrexham in tonight's third-round draw, which will take place at Stamford Bridge and will be shown live on BBC One from 7.30pm.