Dundee’s squad is set to be tested to its limits for tonight’s Premiership clash with Aberdeen as boss Paul Hartley is forced into a reshuffle.
At both ends of the park, the manager doesn’t have any problems to seek as he battles to piece together a team capable of getting a result against the second-placed Dons.
After missing Canada’s friendly with Scotland last week with a damaged right knee, Marcus Haber is rated as “50-50” by his gaffer to make Friday night’s game.
However, Paul may well take the long-term view and avoid the big risk of using the targetman.
Added to that is Henrik Ojamaa and Craig Wighton being on international duty on Tuesday and in defence only two centre-backs — Darren O’Dea and Kevin Gomis — are fit.
Hartley said: “I’ve got three or four different teams in my head.
“The personnel we have will dictate it so we have to prepare that Marcus might be OK, if he’s not OK, whether Ojamaa and the other ones are fit.
“Haber is touch and go. He’s not trained, we’ll see how he is.
“I would say he’s 50-50. He’s not done any work with us, he’s been with the physio.
“He’s not done anything in terms of training, it’s just been working with the physio, treatment, rest.
“It’s really touch and go.
“It’s an awkward one because if we did throw him in and he irritates it, it’s a massive risk because he’s such a big player and we might miss him for the next four or five weeks which is no use to us.
“If he misses one game then so be it.
“Ojamaa was back today after international duty.
“We don’t have another Marcus Haber so we have to look at the other options we do have.
“Craig Wighton’s been away on international duty so we’ve not had him either.
“We’ve not been working with a lot of numbers over the last week or so.”
Kosta Gadzhalov was another casualty of the international break, although he wasn’t representing Bulgaria.
He pulled up in Martyn Fotheringham’s testimonial last Tuesday and will be out for the rest of the pre-split matches. With Julen Etxabeguren missing for the rest of the campaign, that leaves the Dark Blues short of numbers at the back.
“We’re talking three to four weeks for Kosta,” said Paul.
“It’s a bad calf injury. We’ve got two centre-backs who are fit just now.”