Jack Ross expects Jerome Sinclair to be part of his matchday squad on Saturday after the forward made a surprise return to action on Tuesday night.
Sinclair played 25 minutes in Sunderland's penalty win over Stoke City U21's in the Checkatrade Trophy, before scoring in the shoot-out.
The Watford loanee has been out of action since suffering a hamstring injury on the opening day of the season.
Providing there is no reaction in the coming days then he will part of Ross's 18 to take on Fleetwood Town this weekend.
He said: "He’ll certainly be part of the squad, if we hadn’t had this game he would only have trained and it would have been more difficult.
"But from what he did tonight, he very much comes into our thoughts and that is a huge boost for us.
"With Jerome and Charlie, they’re still catching up fitness wise but it gives us the chance to do different things in games which we’ve not had.
"It was slightly unexpected and a bit of a bonus to get him back so quickly," he added.
"He’s progressed really well in the last few days, we had a bit of stand-off with the medical team in the nicest possible way. It was early to throw him in but he trained really well yesterday, was desperate to be involved and we felt as if he could deal with it. He looked lively as well, that’s a big boost for us."
Benjamin Kimpioka, who also came off the bench on Tuesday night, is now set to go on international duty.