NEWPORT County AFC manager Michael Flynn hopes to have one or two key men back from injury for Wednesday’s “huge” Leasing.com Trophy semi-final against Salford City.

County were without seven players due to injury as they went down 1-0 at Mansfield Town in League Two on Saturday.

Goalkeeper Nick Townsend and right-backs Ashley Baker and Dan Leadbitter are likely to be out for the remainder of the season, while January signings Otis Khan, Billy Waters and Dale Gorman are all cup-tied on Wednesday.

But Flynn hopes that he may be able to call upon one or more of Mark O’Brien, George Nurse, Ryan Haynes and Josh Sheehan against Salford.

And, with a place in the Wembley final for the winner and County’s play-off hopes fading fast, he knows the stakes are high.

“It’s a huge game for us,” said Flynn. “We’ll have to see if any of the walking wounded will be back.

“Hopefully we get a few players back. One or two are close. Hopefully there’s a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.

“It’s going to be a difficult game but, if we’re on it, it’s one [we can win]. We’ll definitely give it our best shot,” added the Exiles boss.

“It would be great to get to Wembley because the players deserve it for all the hard work they do.

“And the fans deserve it. Look at the fans who travelled up [on Saturday] in a storm. It’s quite easy for managers to say how great the fans are but they probably didn’t even know if the game was on because of the forecast and it’s a fantastic following.

“They can make the difference for us on Wednesday.”

Campaign Series:

Flynn was frustrated to see his side punished for a mistake by Mickey Demetriou as Danny Rose scored the only goal of the game at Field Mill, but he praised the work ethic of his players.

“I don’t think you can ever question the players’ commitment,” he said.

“The Cambridge game was a poor performance, but you can’t say that they lacked effort.

“That group of players have worked their socks off for us with all the injuries.

“I’ll never question their effort. They kept going to the end and that’s a good trait to have.”

And Flynn insists his team will continue to fight for a top-seven finish this season, even though he concedes that another push for the play-offs now looks unlikely.

“I’ve said to the players, ‘if we put our hands on our hearts, do you think the amount of goals we’ve scored is going to get us into the play-offs?’ The honest answer is no.

“Unless there is a massive turnaround or a drastic change and we go and win every game 1-0 from now on, then it’s going to be difficult.

“We’ll never give up on it, we’ll always keep going, but it is looking tougher and tougher.”

Tickets cost £5 for adults and just £1 for under-16s for Wednesday's match.

They are available online at newport-county.co.uk and over the phone on 01633 264572 or from the Kingsway club shop from 9.30am to 4.30pm.

Read more: Newport County boss admits play-offs look beyond his side after defeat at Mansfield Town