Caley Thistle forward Alex Fisher could be out for up to two months with a chipped bone in his ankle, which has accelerated manager John Hughes’ search for a new attacker.
Fisher was making just his third substitute appearance since joining from Torquay United earlier this month, when he suffered the injury in the latter stages of Tuesday’s 2-0 Scottish Cup victory against Stirling Albion.
The Englishman’s absence further restricts Hughes’ attacking options, who already felt his side was short of creative guile, but will now step up his efforts to add another forward prior to the close of the transfer window a week on Monday.
Hughes said: “We were starting to get players back from injury, and numbers to pick from, but Alex will now be out four to eight weeks.
“That probably speeds up the process of trying to get another one in.
“I think we’re a wee bit off it in the final third, in terms of link-up and combination. We need something special – we’re a bit short of someone that can unlock the door.
“We’ve always been looking, but we’ve just hit a few dead ends. We’ve not carried any luck – one or two didn’t want to come. I can understand that.
“It’s been a hard year. We came back really early, losing a lot of players after winning the Scottish Cup – Billy Mckay, Marley Watkins, Ryan Christie and Nick Ross.
“We now don’t have that at our disposal, so that’s the answer for what we’re looking for. Hopefully we can go and find something.”
Hughes has so far been left frustrated in his attempts to strengthen his squad, failing in an attempt to sign Celtic forward Anthony Stokes on loan, with the Irishman instead opting to join Hibernian.
The Inverness manager remains hopeful he can sell the club to prospective new arrivals, as he did with attacker Miles Storey, who has gone on to become Caley Jags’ leading scorer this season.
Hughes added: “We were hoping winning the Scottish Cup, and what we did last year, would make a difference. But we’re still hitting the same sort of buffers as we did last year.
“It’s a bit frustrating, but something will come. Somebody like Miles Storey, with something to prove, will want to come.
“In the Premiership alone, players get fantastic coverage. No disrespect, but they can be playing down in the English non-leagues or League 2 , or sitting on the bench at Championship or League 1 level, and getting no coverage whatsoever.
“These boys were on the television the other night, which will do them no harm. They get plenty press and plenty coverage when they’re up here in the Premiership.
“When they go to Parkhead to play against Celtic in front of 50,000, that will be the biggest game for a lot of these guys that come here.
“There are plenty attractions. Everybody that comes up to the Highlands falls in love with the place. It’s getting them here in the first place.”