The operation to repair Ross Callachan’s fractured fibula has been a success, Dundee manager James McPake has confirmed.
But the Dens Park boss fears the on-loan midfielder’s season is over.
Callachan, who was stretchered off during the clash with Partick Thistle on Saturday, had made an instant impact after arriving from St Johnstone on loan in January.
The 26-year-old is out of contract in the summer and Dundee may try to sign him on a permanent deal when the next transfer window opens. McPake doesn’t expect to see the former Hearts and Raith Rovers man back in dark blue during this campaign, however.
“He’s had his operation and it has gone well,” said McPake. “We’re gutted for him.
“He’d been doing really well for us. He has added to our dressing room in terms of his personality.
“And you could see he was adding on the pitch as well.
“He’s got quality and was getting up the pitch close to Kano (Kane Hemmings), which was exactly what we were asking of him.
“It’s a sore one to lose him.
“The season is probably done for him, I would imagine.”
Asked if he has a like for like replacement in his squad, McPake said: “I could put somebody out to do that job.
“It’s a difficult question, though. If we lost Graham Dorrans, would there be a like for like with him?
“Box to box was Ross’s game. He’ll be in their box and work all the way back to ours. We need to find that for our team now that he’s not there. And we will.”
There was good news to report regarding the two players who missed Saturday’s game to get minor operations – Cammy Kerr and Jordan McGhee.
“Cammy’s nearly running already,” said McPake. “The tidy-up (on his knee) went very well.
“Cammy and Jordan will maybe be back for Queen of the South but it might be the following week.
“I got asked on Saturday if the break had come at the wrong time. The answer is ‘absolutely not’.
“Cammy was getting to the point that I was getting worried that the more he pushed himself, the more likely he could do greater damage.
“He’s the type who would have just kept going.
“That’s the side of the game people don’t see.
“He’s hardly been able to train for the last three or four weeks and hasn’t been able to straighten his knee fully but desire and will to win for this football club has kept him going.
“At some point, though, you need to pull people back for the good of their health.
“It would have looked like a terrible time to have the two operations if we’d lost to Partick but it has worked out well.”
Jamie Ness is back running and McPake is hoping “special insoles” help make sure the next comeback lasts longer than his previous ones.
Meanwhile, Ross Wallace’s time at Dens has come to an end and he won’t be offered a deal.