JOSH Benson could return from injury before Barnsley host Bristol Rovers in their next game on January 13.

The midfielder has been out for almost two months since coming off at Derby County on November 11, during which time the Reds are unbeaten in the league.

But he has been getting closer to full fitness and head coach Neill Collins said on Monday he could ‘potentially’ be fit for the next game.

Benson has played 78 Reds games since signing a four-year deal in 2021 but has started just three league matches in the last 14 months – struggling with injuries then, when fit, to oust Luca Connell, Adam Phillips and Herbie Kane from the midfield.

The Reds are hoping to move on players who are not getting regular gametime this January transfer window and Benson is thought to be one of the highest-earning players at Oakwell. But he may be wanted to provide competition in midfield in the second half of the season.

Midfielder Matty Wolfe and defender Robbie Cundy are the long-term injury absentees.