Craig Levein will be without the services of Michael Smith and Demi Mitchell for the foreseeable future after both suffered injuries in Hearts’ Scottish Cup win over Auchinleck Talbot.
Smith was a casualty late in the second half and scans have revealed he’s torn a muscle and damaged a tendon, and now faces around eight weeks out.
Mitchell too faces a spell on the sidelines after damaging the lateral meniscus in his knee – a reoccurrence of the same injury that saw him miss part of last season.
Remaining philosophical, the manager – though undoubtedly disappointed to lose both full backs – is taking comfort from having other options available to him.
“We have Marcus Godinho and Jamie Brandon back and they have both played and played well,” he said. “I have been pleased with Marcus when he has played so I have no complaints there.
“With Demi it was innocuous, it was his standing leg and it was just the way he twisted after he shot.
“But we have Jake Mulraney and Bobby Burns who can play there as well.”