Martin O'Neill attempted to freshen up his team by giving his Aston Villa players a few days off last week ahead of tonight's trip to Sheffield United.
But there are other ways of freshening things up. The Villa manager's presence at Birmingham City's game with Preston North End has got the drums beating with reference to how he spends the funds expected to come his way next month.
Of course, it's the time of year when any manager with a Saturday off would be taking in a game. And with the top two in the Championship meeting, O'Neill could have anyone in mind from either side.
Blues, for example, have several players capable of playing at a higher stage — Matthew Upson, Gary McSheffrey and any of their three on-loan Arsenal youngsters. But North End also have two of the most highly-rated talents in the country in Simon Whaley and David Nugent and it is understood that Nugent is the man O'Neill and his chief scout, Ian Storey-Moore, were looking at.
Nugent would be happy to stay at Deepdale and try to fire his team to the Premiership, but he is also realistic enough to know that money talks.
The Liverpool-born 21-year-old said: "It's nice to see your name in the paper, but I'm a Preston player.
"I want to stay here and try and get us in the Premiership and, in an ideal world, I'd like to stay. At the very least, I'd like to stop to the end of the season but Matthew Upson at Birmingham is in a similar position.
"He is out of contract in 18 months, Premier League clubs are targeting him and he has said that if nothing happens in January, he might have to leave if they don't go up. That might be the same with me."
While Nugent drew a blank at St Andrew's, he still looked a handful and it can only be imagined what sort of impact he might make if he was paired with Gabriel Agbonlahor.
The 20-year-old Erdington Express has raised a lot of eyebrows by playing every minute of every single Villa game this season and rarely letting his standards drop. But he is expected to be in action again at Bramall Lane tonight, the only real question being who plays alongside him up front.
Juan Pablo Angel scored Villa's deflected late equaliser at Portsmouth last week on a day when Milan Baros again drew a blank. But the fact that Chris Sutton — the David Nugent of his day and still a threat at the age of 33 — is fit again after his calf problem may be the deciding factor.
"The fact that we've been unable to rest Gabby might show our lack of strength in depth," said O'Neill. "But that's up to us to address that. With a big period coming up between now and New Year, I've told him to go away and rest, just to go and leave thinking about it for a day or two. Go and relax.
"Steven Davis has certainly come back refreshed having been rested from the team for a couple of games. Portsmouth last week was as strong as he has played for us this season.
"He did very well and this is the first break the international players have had, so I've given them a couple of days off too, which I think was the best thing to do.
"When you've got the sort of games we have coming up, we've got Bolton Wanderers after Sheffield United, we know we will have to cope with the physical side of it but that's not a problem. The last thing you want to do is go in with a fear of how other teams might play."
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