CITY are trying to rush through a defensive recruit in time to face Northampton.

The club have confirmed that three offers for players are currently on the table – two for permanent deals.

With options at a premium, Stuart McCall would love to have a short-term addition in his squad for tomorrow. But he admits it is far from certain.

“There have been a couple of bids going into clubs but they are never clear cut,” said the City chief.

“You very rarely hit the target with the first bid, there’s always got to be a middle ground found and then you’ve got to agree terms.

“There’s always work to be done but at least we’ve started the wheels in motion.

“We’re maybe trying to get one in on loan to help the squad. But I don’t think it will happen (in time for tomorrow).

“Adam Chicksen and Tony McMahon, our regular two full backs, are out. Since the window opened, we’ve lost Luke Hendrie and Tom Field.

“We are certainly short in defensive areas and need cover. But there is a lot of hard work going on behind the scenes and sometimes it takes time.

“You see the teams around us strengthening and that’s what we aim to do. Every manager will tell you that you want to come out of the window stronger.

“Numbers are down right now but that will hopefully improve in the coming days and weeks.”

City have been linked with Nottingham Forest midfielder Jorge Grant, who has scored 16 goals on loan at Notts County. There is thought to be interest but not much more at this stage.

They are actively searching for another striker but the T&A understands they are unlikely to rekindle summer interest in Wimbledon’s Lyle Taylor.

McCall can at least call upon Nathaniel Knight-Percival, Rouven Sattelmaier and Jake Reeves for the Valley Parade tussle with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s Northampton.

But Omari Patrick faces up to six weeks out with a knee ligament injury he suffered in the reserves on Tuesday.

With a couple of others struggling, McCall admits City are unlikely to be able to fill the bench again. The subs will include winger Ellis Hudson, whose loan at Harrogate Town was cut short so he can return.

McCall insists there will be no chins on the floor at Valley Parade in the aftermath of the FA Cup misery at Yeovil.

City are eyeing a third league win on the bounce and he can take positives from the performance in the last home game against Oxford.

McCall added: “The season has not ended and we’re still in a really strong position.

“Look back to the first half against Oxford and that was as good a performance as I’ve seen by any team in this division since I’ve been back here.

“When you watch it again, the amount of chances and opportunities we made were fantastic.

“We’re on the back of two good victories in the league and we’ve got to look to build on that.

“There is a bit of adversity at the minute because we’ve got injuries and the squad in certain areas isn’t what we’d like it to be.

“But that happens and you’ve got to come out fighting. I’m sure we will do.

“Northampton have brought in three or four new faces and are on the back of a good victory against Southend. They are fighting for their lives.

“But it’s about what we do. The lads are desperate to put in a strong performance and move on.”