As Reading fans look to returning defensive options Paul McShane and Joey van den Berg to shore up the backline for the run-in, Jaap Stam has confirmed that neither will feature against Wigan Athletic on Saturday.
Although both trained with the first-team in the week building up to the match, in which the Royals can confirm their place in the play-offs, this Championship fixture is expected to come too soon for them.
Announcing their unavailability at his pre-match press conference, Stam also delivered the bad news on Callum Harriott's fitness situation, the winger being ruled out for the rest of the season.
Struck down by a hamstring injury for the entirety of 2017 thus far, the Englishman has now picked up a recurrence of the problem and undergone surgery.
Otherwise, the Reading boss spoke about how his side need to align their form whether playing home or away, and how to follow Brighton's example in pursuing promotion.
"I don’t think about home or away form," he said. "We need to do better in general though. You’re always looking for answers in how it’s possible to get better results. We’ve done it in the big games this season but maybe that's a problem.
"Brighton have built a side and been consistent. That’s what you look at to be successful. We will look at the areas where we need to improve over the summer and work out ways of getting our home and away form the same.
"It’s important for a club to be consistent and to know what’s needed to get to the top of the league. How you build the team, having the mentality and consistency as a team.
"Brighton are a good example. Southampton are another example, they went up in 2012 with Reading and look where they are."
Saturday's game kicks off at 15:00 with the home team knowing a positive result can confirm their play-off spot for next month, and relegate Wigan in the process.