Dundee United defender Paul Dixon is making an “incredible recovery” from his knee injury.
Dixon hurt his ligaments during the Tangerines’ Betfred Cup match against Inverness Caley Thistle on July 23.
The left-back has missed the last five matches as a result and will also be sidelined for tomorrow’s big Championship clash with league leaders Raith Rovers at Tannadice.
Dixon has reputation as a quick healer, however, and there is now a chance he could make a dramatic comeback when United host Peterhead in the Irn Bru Cup the following Saturday.
That would see him return a fortnight earlier than expected.
United manager Ray McKinnon confirmed: “Dicker is coming along very nicely.
“Indeed, we are hopeful that he might be fit for next Saturday.
“He is stepping up the work so we are really pleased with that.
“It has been an incredible recovery, two weeks ahead of schedule.”
By then, United could have at least one new face on board, with McKinnon continuing to work to improve his central defence.
He said: “We are getting closer.
“We are actively looking to strengthen the squad.
“You never know, we might have something by the end of this week or start of next week.”
It is, of course, a familiar foe that former Rovers gaffer McKinnon will try to vanquish this weekend.
He knows several members of the Kirkcaldy squad very well and is expecting his old club to cross the Tay in confident mood.
“I can’t wait for it,” he said.
“The nucleus of the squad is still there from last season.
“They are top of the league and have done so well already this season.
“I know most of their players inside out so I’ve got a good handle on them.
“Ross Matthews and Ross Callachan are good players, and there’s wee Bobby Barr, whom I signed, as well as Jason Thomson and Kyle Benedictus.
“They are all still there and doing well for Gary Locke, as they did for me.
“It will be a tough game and they are going to be trying their best, aren’t they?
“I hope they will come and have a go and I think they will.
“I think there is an added edge.
“There will definitely be a few at Raith who will be really keen to impress, without naming names.
“There are boys who did really well for me last season who will want to keep on impressing.”
McKinnon has been genuinely delighted with the strength of support – both in numbers and noise – from the United fans in these early stages of the season.
He believes they will rally around again for the Rovers clash.
“I am expecting a massive crowd on Saturday, maybe in the region of 8,000, which would be enormous for a game in this division,” he said.