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Dundee United without first-choice full-backs for Betfred Cup clash

Dundee United without first-choice full-backs for Betfred Cup clash

Dundee United could again be without both first choice full-backs in tonight’s Betfred Cup clash with Partick Thistle at Tannadice.

Already ruled out is left-back Paul Dixon after he had surgery on his injured knee on Saturday night.

And right-back Lewis Toshney is a big doubt after missing Saturday’s Championship opener with Queen of the South because of a calf strain.

Dixon is expected to be out for two months and while that’s a blow, things could have been worse.

A scan late last week revealed ligament damage was the problem he suffered at Inverness last month.

Had the injury been any worse he could have been facing eight months on the sidelines, so in some ways United are relieved he’ll only be out for six to eight weeks.

But not having two players who had been starring in the early games is still frustrating for boss Ray McKinnon.

“It’s a blow because they’d both been playing well and getting forward. The way we want to play, they are very important to us,” he said.

“At least we have Sean Dillon and young Jamie (Robson) in the squad and they came in and did well.”

Ray felt the draw with Queens should have been a victory in the end but felt a difficult first half that saw United trail at the interval, can act as a wake-up call.

“We were a bit sloppy in the first half and gave the ball away cheaply a couple of times.

“Credit to Queen of the South for the way they played and it was maybe the wake-up call my players needed.

“They have to match every team that comes here. They won’t just get to go out there and play football, they will have to earn that right.

“It was a great response from them second half and they created numerous chances.

“In the end we probably should have won but nothing is going to be easy in this league.”

United’s point came via a wonderful effort from Dutchman Nick van der Velden.

His gaffer admitted even after just a few weeks working with him he was not surprised by the quality of the strike.

“It was top drawer, it was a wee bit of magic.

“He’s a very talented player and I have seen him do stuff like that in training a few times already.”

Tonight against the Jags will see midfielder Scott Fraser return to the squad.

He missed out on Saturday through suspension.

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This article originally appeared on the Evening Telegraph website. For more information, read about our new combined website.