Dundee face an anxious wait over a number of their first-team squad after a punishing international break.
And with the Dark Blues’ weekend fixture coming on Friday night against Aberdeen, time is short for those who picked up injuries and those with tired legs.
The major injury issue for manager Paul Hartley is striker Marcus Haber, who hurt his knee late in the game against Celtic, forcing him to pull out of Canada’s friendly with Scotland on the day of the game.
Pulling out was a precautionary measure with a big end to the season coming for Dundee and targetman Haber has become an integral part of the gameplan since signing back in October and will leave a huge void should he not regain fitness in time for the Dons clash.
At the other end of the park, with the squad already short of centre-back cover due to long-term injuries to Julen Etxabeguren and James McPake, Kosta Gadzhalov limped out of Martyn Fotheringham’s testimonial last Tuesday.
It’s still unclear what the nature of the problem is but if the Bulgarian is out for any length of time, Hartley only has two fit senior centre-backs to call on in Darren O’Dea and Kevin Gomis.
Former Celtic youngster, Daniel Higgins, who signed for the club in January, impressed in that testimonial at Station Park in the centre of defence. However, it’s one thing doing well against League Two Forfar in a friendly and another entirely coming up against Aberdeen’s front three of Adam Rooney, Jonny Hayes and Niall McGinn.
Other worries for the Dundee forward line concern Henrik Ojamaa and Craig Wighton.
Both are set to feature in international matches tomorrow night and, with the Premiership fixture with the Dons just three nights after that, there is little time to recover.
Ojamaa is set to feature for Estonia in a friendly against Croatia in Tallinn.
And he won’t return to Dens until the day before the Aberdeen game.
The 25-year-old striker started in their 0-0 draw in Cyprus on Saturday but was substituted after 65 minutes. That result leaves Estonia in fifth place in Group H with four points from five games and essentially rules out any hope of catching the front three of Belgium, Greece and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Meanwhile, Wighton is in the Scotland U/21 squad who take on Estonia in a friendly at St Mirren Park tomorrow night.