Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes is facing a Scottish Cup final injury crisis, with Peter Pawlett joining captain Ryan Jack in a fitness fight to face Celtic.
Pawlett, who will join MK Dons in the summer, is awaiting the result of a scan on an Achilles injury which could rule him out of a Hampden farewell against the Hoops.
With Jack, who is out of contract in the summer, also facing a fight to make Hampden after undergoing groin surgery this week and on-loan Hoops midfielder Ryan Christie ineligible against his parent club, McInnes is short of options in the Pittodrie engine room.
The Dons manager would love to rest players for the visit of Celtic to Pittodrie on league duty tonight but insists he has no chance of letting some of his squad rest up.
He said: “The reality is we have a tight squad. We’ve said it all season and we’ve been fortunate with injuries but we’ve picked up two and Ryan’s ineligible.
“We’re pretty stretched and we don’t have, even if I wanted to, the luxury of freshening it up too much.
“Peter Pawlett’s had a scan and we’re waiting on the results.
“We are hoping for some positive news as we have three more games to get through before the final and we already have two boys extremely doubtful and Ryan is ineligible, so we can’t afford to be carrying injuries going into it.
“There was a little procedure needed for Ryan’s groin. We put a stitch in to try and protect him.
“I’ve got three out and coming on to the bench I’ll have a 16-year-old in Dean Campbell, who is still at Hazlehead Academy.
“There will be 17-year-old Seb Ross alongside Scott Wright and Frank Ross.”
Celtic are three games from going the league campaign unbeaten but McInnes is confident his side can end the Hoops’ run tonight.
He said: “I don’t think the result will have any bearing on the cup final but the performance for us is important going into it.
“We want to be good enough to get a result but it’s important we let Celtic know we are there.
“If we can get a positive performance and maybe even a positive result, it may well help our players going into the final.
“Even if we don’t, I’m still confident we’ll be good enough on the day to with the cup.”