Wigan will be without captain Gary Caldwell for at least a fortnight as the Scotland international recovers from a hamstring injury.
Caldwell aggravated the problem in the defeat at Newcastle on December 3 but suspension for the weekend's 2-2 draw at QPR lessened his absence slightly.
However, it could be Boxing Day before the centre-back returns, although manager Roberto Martinez has received more encouraging news about Ivan Ramis as he looks to repair a patched up defence.
"Caldwell is still in week one of a three-week recovery period," the Spaniard told Latics Player.
"He missed the game against Reading (on November 24) as he was carrying a bit of a hamstring problem and that was accentuated in the Newcastle game.
"It will be between two or three weeks but he has recovered well and in the last couple of days he has been progressing.
"He won't be ready for Norwich (on Saturday) but he won't be far away."
Martinez estimates fellow centre-back Antolin Alcaraz is "10 days away" from returning from a groin problem while Ramis is "50-50" for Carrow Road after a hamstring problem.