Jordon Forster is poised to make his first Ladbrokes Championship start in nearly a year and a half as Hibs boss Neil Lennon is forced to shuffle his back four on Sunday.
Left-back Lewis Stevenson serves a one-match ban after being sent off in the no-scoring draw against Queen of the South after picking up two yellow cards and will sit out the visit of Dundee United this weekend as Hibs seek to pick up their first win in three games.
Lennon countered being reduced to ten men by immediately replacing striker Jason Cummings with Forster, the 23-year-old slotting in alongside Darren McGregor in central defence as Paul Hanlon moved out to the flank.
The 26-year-old is no stranger to that position having regularly played left-back earlier in his career and, with 20-year-old Callum Crane, whose only first-team experience to date came in the Irn-Bru Cup victory over Turriff United, the only obvious alternative, Forster would appear to be the straightforward option.
Lennon’s options are restricted with Liam Fontaine having been out with a calf injury since the middle of last month. Although the 30-year-old has resumed training he is short of match practice and would unlikely to be pitched straight back in and so risk further problems.
While new signing Neal Eardley is likely to be part of Hibs’ squad for the visit of United, the former Birmingham City player is predominantly a right-back, signed on a short-term deal to offer both cover and competition to club skipper David Gray, leaving Forster to team up again with McGregor.
Forster’s last league start came in the final day of the season before last, a 3-0 win away to Falkirk in which he limped off after suffering an ankle injury early in the second half. He started the first match of last season, the Petrofac Cup clash with Rangers, but again he had to be replaced shortly after the interval, this time with a hamstring problem.
It was to be Forster’s only appearance of the season for Hibs, the player opting for a six-month loan deal with Plymouth Argyle in search of regular first-team football as, with his contract about to expire, he contemplated his longer-term future.
However, the arrival of Lennon persuaded him to agree a new two-year deal although since then he’s been restricted to only five brief appearances as a substitute in the league as the Hibs manager has, until now, been able to field a settled back line.
Meanwhile, tickets for Hibs’ Irn-Bru tie against St Mirren at Easter Road a week tomorrow have gone on sale with season-ticket holders enjoying the opportunity to buy theirs at a reduced price.
Tickets are priced at £12 (adults) and £6 (concessions) but season-ticket holders can buy their seat for £10 (adults) and £5 (concessions) provided they do so before noon next Friday.