Caley Thistle midfielder Sean Welsh’s injury fears have been compounded after it was confirmed he has broken his metatarsal for the second time in six months.
The injury, which Welsh picked up during Saturday’s 2-0 victory over Ayr United, is on the opposite foot from his previous break he suffered in March, which resulted in a five-month absence.
It is a bitter blow for former Hibernian and Partick Thistle player Welsh, who had worked his way back to fitness before netting two goals in five appearances in recent weeks.
Caley Jags boss John Robertson confirmed 29-year-old Welsh is likely to be out for the rest of 2019, and he said: “It’s his opposite metatarsal this time. He is going to spend a similar amount of time out. It might be three or four months again.
“It’s unfortunate as it’s on his other foot. He will go for an operation next week, and then start the long rehabilitation back.”
While Welsh faces a lengthy period on the sidelines, Robertson revealed winger Mitch Curry will make his long-awaited return from an ankle ligament injury in tomorrow’s Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer Challenge Cup tie against Alloa Athletic.
Curry, who is on loan from Middlesbrough, has undergone his rehabilitation with his parent club after suffering the injury in a Betfred Cup match against Dundee in July, however Robertson says he is ready to be unleashed against the Wasps.
Robertson added: “Mitch came back up last week. He would have been involved in the North of Scotland Cup against Brora Rangers on Sunday, but he just had a little niggle in his groin.
“He has trained all week and we are hopeful he can feature, although we are not 100% sure whether he starts or comes off the bench.
“We will chat to the medical team and see exactly where his fitness is, but it looks good.
“He will be one that will be involved heavily in the game.”
Robertson will once again pass on management duties to Scott Kellacher and Barry Wilson for tomorrow’s game, as he did for the 3-1 win over Morton in the previous round.
The Highlanders will once again ring the changes, with the likes of Brad Mckay, Kevin McHattie and Charlie Trafford in line to start.
Robertson added: “It gives us the opportunity to make a few changes and get a few boys up to match speed.
“For guys who have been waiting for a chance to impress, and did in the last round against Morton, it gives them the opportunity to press for first team claims.
“We have got a few injuries, so it shows these lads that if they can come in and do the business, we will have no problem playing them.
“As we have said before, we need everybody in the squad playing at a good level.”