Ross County hope to learn today (Wednesday) how long defender Coll Donaldson may be sidelined by a suspected fractured cheekbone.
The January signing from Caley Thistle took a nasty blow to the face late on in Saturday’s draw with St Johnstone, leaving County to salvage the point with 10 men.
The big centre half, previously with Livingstion, QPR and Dundee United, has started all eight matches since his flit across the Kessock Bridge, justifying the small undisclosed fee County paid to secure his services midway through the season.
Co-manager Steven Ferguson is naturally hoping the lay-off will not be lengthy.
Ferguson said: “Unfortunately, Coll got a sore one and credit to him. He had an opportunity to score and went all in to get it.
“He’s come away with what looks like a fractured cheekbone. We’ll get more information on that tomorrow.
“We’ll just need to do without Coll for the short term and, hopefully, he’s back on the pitch sooner rather than later.”
County, just like last season en-route to the Championship title, haven’t had their injury woes to seek since returning to the Premiership.
Only recently have they been able to recall experienced heads including Ross Draper, Iain Vigurs and Don Cowie, while other influential performers remain out.
Ferguson said: “Again, it sometimes flies under the radar the players we are missing.
“Ross Stewart is still out, as is Michael Gardyne and Tom Grivosti, while Coll is added to that list as well.”
Ferguson and co-manager Stuart Kettlewell now face a trip to Aberdeen, the first of consecutive away matches against European qualification contenders with Motherwell up next.
He stressed: “It will be very difficult. We’re talking about Aberdeen, one of the biggest clubs in the country, established in everything they do.
“We’re going there under no illusions that we’re very much the small fish and we need to make sure we stand up to Aberdeen’s threat and give them something to think about also.
“That’s not easy, but we’ll try our very best.
“Aberdeen are a team that we know do what they do very well. They can flip quite easily from being ultra-physical and aggressive to managing the ball and playing intricate sequences.
“We know Aberdeen can flip that switch when they want.
“We know their strength in depth within their squad, we know they can change it personnel-wise and shape-wise.
“Over the years that Derek has had his group of players, he has got them in a position to be able to do that.
“We need to be ready for whatever Aberdeen throw at us on Saturday, but also be ready to see if we can cause them a problem as well.”
Ferguson, though, was buoyed by the late comeback County made to take a point at home at St Johnstone through Billy Mckay’s leveller.
He said: “Our players sometimes don’t get the credit they deserve for the amount of late goals they’ve got from the positions we’ve been in.
“We tend to focus on negatives all the time, but we see enough positives in our group and among the players. We have that fighting spirit and we’ll use it the best we can.”
“We need to be in the game, but we also need to be looking to score goals and try to come away with something on Saturday.”