The return of long-term absentees Rhys Turner and Matt Elsdon will give Barrow AFC a new dimension and greater physicality, according to manager Ian Evatt.

Neither has featured for the Bluebirds since picking up serious injuries in August and they are two of six players that missed AFC’s last match at Ebbsfleet who are available again for tomorrow’s visit of Eastleigh.

Turner certainly provides a different option up front, in that he is capable of leading the line in a way that allows him to hold the ball up and bring nimble attacking players like Tyler Smith and Luke Burgess into play.

The 23-year-old last took to the field on August 11, when he fractured a foot in the 1-1 draw at Leyton Orient, curtailing a promising start at the club.

Evatt said: “Rhys is going to be a fantastic player for us – he started the season really well and in the game up at Leyton Orient, where we were winning 1-0, he was ripping them to shreds.

“It was a freak tackle and a freak injury to his foot that has kept him out for a long time, but now he’s over that, he’s fit and firing.

“I’m really looking forward to getting him back involved with the first team and I’m very happy that he’s back.”

Four days before Turner was ruled out, centre-back Elsdon, 21, injured his knee in what was his competitive debut for Barrow at Halifax Town, which was AFC’s second game of the season.

Elsdon himself had come off the bench early in that match after fellow defender Brian Wilson had hurt his calf.

“It was a nasty injury that he’s come through well,” Evatt said, adding: “He’s worked ever so hard on his fitness while he’s been injured.

“Matty again is something we’ve not had – he’s a big, strong, tall and aggressive centre-back and that is something, in certain games, that we have lacked.

“We haven’t had that and now we’ve got that option again, which is good for me and the team.”