Juwon Oshaniwa is expected to return from injury when Hearts face Dundee on Saturday.
The Nigerian left-back is one of several Tynecastle players ordered to rest during the international break, with captain Alim Ozturk possibly back in action in the next fortnight.
Despite his team winning four successive league games prior to the break, head coach Robbie Neilson was grateful for the chance to let players recover. Oshaniwa has missed three of the last four matches with a niggling hamstring problem and a shin knock but should be available this weekend when the Ladbrokes Premiership resumes.
“He had a knock on his shin from the Dundee United game last month which was flaring up every now and again. It’s fine now and he’s looking good,” said Neilson. “He has been given a couple of days off to recover but he’ll be ready for this week.”
Ozturk hasn’t featured since late September due to hernia surgery but is due to restart full training at Riccarton today. “We’ve got Ozturk coming back to start full training with us,” continued Neilson.
“He’ll be another two weeks after that but he’s starting to get there. I wouldn’t expect him back for the Dundee game but he could be available for the week after that [against Motherwell].
“The break has actually come at a good time for us. We have a few boys with niggling injuries that have been dragging on a bit. This has given us a bit of time to get them rested. Oshaniwa has had time off, we should have Ozturk back soon and there are a couple of others who were playing with niggles before this break. They’ve had some time off now so we will get them ready for the Dundee game next week, then it’s a big six weeks for us running through to New Year.”