Callum Paterson is expected to return to Hearts’ starting line-up in place of the injured Ryan Stevenson at Easter Road tomorrow night.
The 19-year-old was left on the substitutes’ bench at Kilmarnock on Saturday but is likely to be recalled for the Scottish League Cup quarter-final against Hibs.
Hearts were this morning awaiting results of a scan on the knee injury Stevenson sustained at Rugby Park. Possible ligament damage is the concern for a player who only recently recovered from a torn medial ligament. Regardless of the severity of the problem, he will almost certainly be missing tomorrow night.
“It’s obviously a huge blow for us and for Ryan as he’s only just returned from a long-term injury. He’s hurt that same knee again,” Locke told the club website yesterday. “We’ll know more once we get the results back but at the moment it certainly does not look good.”
Paterson, pictured, headed the winning goal in the first Edinburgh derby of the season at Tynecastle in August and will be eager to replicate that feat again. He has two goals to his credit so far this season, the other coming against Ross County in Dingwall last month.
The versatility he offers is expected to see him regain a place in the starting line-up, either as a striker or in midfield. The other major decision for Locke will be whether to recall defender Dylan McGowan, another player who was left out of the team which lost 2-0 to Kilmarnock at the weekend.