GARY Bowyer will assess whether to give Mauro Formica another pre-season run-out at Preston tonight, with the manager insisting the door is not closed on the Argentinian at Blackburn Rovers.

Formica made his first public appearance of pre-season when he featured as a substitute in Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Rochdale, having also played in a behind closed doors match against Fleetwood last week.

The 25-year-old is being allowed to find a club as Rovers look to reduce their wage bill, but a move to Bani Yas fell through earlier this month after Formica failed a medical.

The Abu Dhabi club’s public comments about the medical, citing a knee injury picked up in against Cardiff in December, are known to have angered Rovers.

“The announcement to cancel the contract came after a medical examination and the opinion of the club’s medical committee, which reported that the player has an old injury and there is a possibility of the injury repeating in the future,” Bani Yas said in a statement at the time.

“Based on that, the club management has decided not to risk signing with the player.”

Since that injury in December, Formica went on loan to Italian side Palermo for the second half of last season and Bowyer says he has no fitness concerns over the player.

“I think my comments on that and how it was dealt with by that club should remain private," he said.

“Saturday was his second game, he played in the behind closed doors game, there has been a lot said about his so-called failed medical but he’s trained every day of pre-season and played a game.

“He’s proved that whatever was said out in Abu Dhabi is not necessarily true.”

And Bowyer says Formica will be considered for selection at the start of the season if a move does not develop before then.

The former Newell’s Old Boys player has also attracted interest from Greece and Mexico this summer.

“If he doesn’t leave the football club then of course he becomes part of it,” Bowyer said. “It was good to see him on the pitch.”

Paul Robinson and Dickson Etuhu remain on the sidelines, though, and Bowyer has confirmed both are unlikely to be available until the end of September.

Robinson had been hopeful of being fit for the start of the season after suffering a blood clot following a back operation, but Rovers are taking a cautious approach.

“Dickson started running last week, so he was out on the grass," Bowyer said.

“With Paul Robinson, I think it’s going to be late September for the pair of them.”

Markus Olsson, David Dunn and Ruben Rochina missed the Rochdale game with only minor injuries, while Lee Williamson (back) and Adam Henley (hamstring) are also on the way back – with Rovers’ first game coming at Derby on August 4.

“Lee Williamson is now starting to make improvements on his back injury,” Bowyer said.

“We’re being a little bit careful with Adam but the lad’s working ever so hard and he won’t be too far off in a couple of weeks.”

Rovers face a Preston side managed by ex-Blackburn player Simon Grayson in tonight’s 7.45pm kick-off.

Bowyer wants an improvement on the performance at Rochdale at the weekend.

“It’s a local derby, Simon Grayson is an ex-Blackburn player and we know exactly what’s going to come at us,” he said. “We’ve got to be ready for that.”