Game-changer Nicky Clark could be elevated to the Dundee United starting line-up for tonight’s play-off semi-final conclusion against Inverness Caley Thistle.
Despite being the Tangerines’ second top scorer with 13 goals this season, the 27-year-old has not been in the starting line-up since the league win at Inverness almost a month ago.
He made a big impression, however, when he came on for the last 22 minutes or so of Tuesday’s first-leg win at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium.
His 78th-minute shot came back off a post and allowed Paul McMullan to knock in the rebound for the only goal of the game for United.
In addition to his involvement at that vital moment, manager Robbie Neilson was impressed with his general play.
“Nicky did very well coming off the bench and I was really pleased with him,” said Robbie.
“He was unlucky not to score himself with his effort that hit the post and led to the goal. He also used the ball well and brought others into play.”
With Pavol Safranko a doubt because of the virus that led to him coming off at half-time in Inverness, there could well be room for Clark in the starting XI.
As well as Safranko, several other players face fitness checks ahead of the game.
Attacker Peter Pawlett completed 90 minutes despite needing lengthy treatment after a first-half tackle by Tannadice old boy Coll Donaldson United felt should have seen referee Nick Walsh produce a red card instead of the yellow he did flash.
Midfielder Calum Butcher suffered a cut to his forehead but will be OK and a number of others picked up knocks.
“Physically it was a tough game, so there were knocks, but you expect that in these type of games,” added Robbie.
Inverness will definitely be without Liam Polworth after they decided against appealing his 48th-minute red card for catching Mark Connolly with a high boot.
Boss John Robertson was adamant the contact was accidental and caused as much by Connolly dipping his head slightly as he also went for the ball.
He admitted it was not an obvious mistake by the ref and, on that basis, decided against trying to get the decision overturned.