Slavisa Jokanovic says he expects Kevin McDonald to return “soon” from a calf injury that kept him out of the 1-1 draw with Norwich City.
The former Wolves midfielder also missed the final pre-season friendly with Wolfsburg but had been expected to be fit to face the Canaries.
However, Jokanovic said McDonald failed a fitness test on the morning of the game.
The Whites boss said: “We expected yesterday he would be available but when we checked him this morning he wasn’t available for play today. We expect he will soon be available to help us.”
Jokanovic said that, although he had not seen a replay, he felt the Norwich equaliser, scored by Nelson Oliveira, should have been disallowed for offside.
But he said his side did not deserve more than a point for their display and was not happy with the number of chances the Canaries created down their right-hand side, against left-back Ryan Sessegnon, who was taken off after an hour.
“We found many problems on our left side in the first half. They created a few chances and didn’t score,” Jokanovic said.
“They complained about a possible penalty. I can complain about offside when they scored the goal. But that’s not a solution for us.
“To be honest we didn’t work enough for different reasons. I made the changes to find more power but I didn’t find it.
“We needed to push harder. We needed to be stronger. If you arrive [ahead] two minutes before the end you must be focused and do everything to avoid the situation we found today.”