Thomas Courts has a selection dilemma at left-back ahead of his first competitive match as Dundee United head coach.
Courts, who took the Terrors’ top team on a temporary basis for one match last season, is set to make his dugout bow for real at former club Kelty Hearts tomorrow.
Injuries to key men have given him plenty to think about heading into the Premier Sports Cup Group B clash – with full-backs Jamie Robson and Adrian Sporle set to miss out.
Attacker Louis Appere and centre-back Ryan Edwards also won’t be involved in Fife, as Courts gave an update as to the status of his squad.
Edwards brings ‘energy, presence and quality back into the group’
“We’ve got a couple of suspensions carried over from last season – Ryan Edwards and Jamie Robson,” he said.
“Adrian Sporle took a little knock in the friendly at Brechin last week (4-1 win) so we’re assessing him.
“Louis Appere had a problem with his thigh a week ago. We got a scan on that and it’s not as bad as first feared.
“We’re nursing him back into the fold just now, the same goes for Jamie, who’s back in full training.
“Ryan is doing fantastic. It was his first full day of training on Wednesday so, as you can imagine, his energy, presence and quality back into the group is a nice little injection.
“I’m looking forward to having him available for selection soon.
“Apart from that, the squad is fighting fit just now.”
A chance for youngster Duffy?
The absence of Robson and Sporle could open the door for young left-back Flynn Duffy, who’s taken part in all of United’s warm-up games.
With Robson being linked with a move south of the border to Oxford United, it could be a chance for the 17-year-old defender to stake a claim.
Asked if he’ll need to change the system or bring in a young player, Courts was open to the idea.
He continued: “Potentially, we’re looking at a couple of options just now.
“As a part of getting the job here, particularly at this early stage of the season, if we need to play a young player then we’d have no problem doing that.”
Courts proud of Kelty’s rise
As for his former employers Kelty, newly promoted into the SPFL, Courts has been impressed by their rise through the pyramid.
He is proud to have played his part in helping the New Central Park side, a club he managed from 2013-18, find their way to League Two.
Although he is fully focused on the job at hand at United, Courts can’t hide his delight at seeing Kelty ‘realising their potential’.
Asked if he’s proud of their rise, he commented: “Absolutely. It is a club I have known for the best part of 12 or 13 years.
“It is a club that I always believed had potential. Over the last six or seven years they have really started to realise that potential.
“It has been fantastic to see them get promoted through the play-offs and to prove that the pyramid is a great thing for ambitious, part-time teams.”