Ross County manager Malky Mackay hopes to finalise the signing of a defender in the coming week.
The Staggies opened their Viaplay Cup campaign with a convincing 5-1 victory over League Two side Stranraer at Stair Park.
Simon Murray’s hat-trick, an own goal by Craig Ross and a late Jack Baldwin header got the Staggies’ season off to a flying start.
County are still light in numbers defensively, following the departure of skipper Keith Watson and Alex Iacovitti.
Although he is satisfied with the central defensive cover provided by Ben Purrington and Connor Randall, the Staggies boss insists strengthening his rearguard is a priority.
Mackay said: “There’s the possibility of another defender coming in during the week.
“We lost two experienced men at the back and we have not replaced them.
“We have replaced bits and pieces but if you actually look at it, Jack Baldwin is on his own at the back in terms of being an experienced centre back.
“We have young Dylan Smith, while Ben Purrington has been out for a long time. He’s a left back, although playing the left side of a three I think he’s terrific.
“I also think Connor Randall can play anywhere for me. I’ve got full backs playing for me there at the moment, and I certainly need one not to be that.”
Murray showing signs of sharpness
Mackay praised forward Simon Murray, whose hat-trick helped County coast to victory against the Blues.
The Staggies boss feels Murray is getting up to speed following his January switch from Queen’s Park.
He added: “I’m delighted for him. It was him coming back into the Premiership from where he was beforehand.
“He was coming up the leagues, getting back to sharpness and into the way of playing against the top division defenders.
“Once we got him back into the way of the club, the runs we want him to make playing alongside Jordan White, we know we’ve got a goalscorer no matter what. He just sees where the goal is.
“He also works really hard and I thought he was our best player – forget the goals. He was tough, against tough players.
“It’s actually good to come away and get the three points as a starting point, because there are a few teams who have not done that.
“Fair play to our little crew that came down for the game. To come to Stranraer from Dingwall to support us is incredible.
“Some of them stayed in the same hotel as us on Friday night and I’m delighted for them. They saw goals and a win as well too.”
Akio moves on from Staggies
County confirmed on Friday that attacker William Akio has left the club, returning to Canada to join Cavalry FC.
Akio made 14 appearances following his switch from Valour FC last summer, and spent the latter part of the campaign on loan with Raith Rovers.
Mackay insists it suited both club and player to part ways – and also confirmed Akio’s brother Victor Loturi will return to the Staggies in the next seven days after representing Canada in the Gold Cup.
Mackay added: “It was just the right thing. William came in and I’m not sure that he settled too well.
“He went down to Raith Rovers and did a bit there and then the Canada thing came up for him to go back home again and it was the right thing.
“He’s been away with South Sudan as well and credit to him for that as well.
“His brother has been capped now by Canada and we can’t wait to get him back in the next week some time.
“He has played for two years solid now so we’ve given him a week off after the Gold Cup where he made his Canada debut which I’m delighted about.
“His brother is going back but everyone has their own career path and Victor is well set up at the club now.”