Csaba Laszlo could wrap key midfielder Fraser Fyvie up in cotton wool for part of Dundee United’s pre-season build-up in a bid to make sure he’s fit for most of next season.
Fyvie, who signed a new two-year contract recently, is still battling back from a serious knee injured that forced him to miss the second half of last season.
And while the 25-year-old is keen to start full training when the new-look United squad report for work tomorrow after their summer break, Csaba may ease him back.
He’s even prepared to see Fyvie miss the opening weeks of the season to make sure he’s 100% ready when he does return.
“I hope, of course, he is ready soon but if by the end of September he is on the pitch I will be happy about it,” said Csaba.
“He’s made a huge development. He is already OK and he wants to begin but I want him to take it a little bit easier because we want him for the long term, not two weeks.”
Another of United’s long-term absentees from last term, James Keatings, will definitely be working with the rest of the squad right from the off tomorrow.
The former Hearts and Hibs man has been out since early January because of a groin problem that required surgery.
He’s been working over the summer, however, and is on course to be ready for the big kick-off next month.
“Keatings is OK. Every second day he sends me a message saying I want to be training,” added Csaba.
Still on the injury list are goalkeeper Deniz Mehmet and defender Lewis Toshney.
Deniz will be out for several more months after his recent knee operation that followed the freak injury he suffered in the play-off win over Dunfermline last month, while Toshney’s condition will be assessed in the next week or so.
He has yet to play under Csaba because of a knee problem that’s ruled him out since last October.
“The one we don’t know how far on he is and is still in the recovery process is Toshney.
“He’s made good steps forward but we have to see how the knee will react.”
With eight new players and four fresh appointments to the coaching staff, there will be plenty new faces when the squad reports to their St Andrews training base tomorrow morning.