Hearts will ask the Scottish Professional Football League to postpone Sunday's Premiership match with Partick Thistle if Tynecastle's new main stand is not ready.
Club officials are hopeful work will be completed in time and a safety certificate granted by City of Edinburgh Council to allow the match to go ahead as planned. Safety officers inspected the building yesterday but could not issue the paperwork and will return for another look later this week.
If that visit does not result in the required rubber stamp, Hearts will request a postponement of the Partick fixture. They have already contacted the SPFL and their Firhill counterparts to brief them on the situation.
The decision will be a late one and builders on the project are working frantically to finish a number of areas of the new stand, which was originally due to open in September. That was put back to November 5 but, with work still not completed, a further delay was announced and a new opening date set for this Sunday.
Hearts are doing everything possible to stick to that schedule, however they are bracing themselves in case time runs out. In that event, they would be forced to wait and open the new Tynecastle Park a week on Saturday against Ross County.
Since being eliminated from the Betfred Cup in July, all of Hearts' matches have taken place away from their spiritual home. Four "home" ties have been staged at BT Murrayfield, which has become the club's temporary home.
Murrayfield cannot host football matches during the winter due to Scotland rugby internationals being played there, leaving Hearts with no room to manoeuvre.