Hibs boss Colin Calderwood will be left sweating over the fitness of a large chunk of his squad ahead of the crucial SPL clash with Aberdeen with seven Easter Road players away on international duty.
Paul Hanlon, David Wotherspoon, Callum Booth, Victor Palsson, Richie Towell, Leigh Griffiths and David Stephens have all been called up for their respective countries’ Under-21 European Championship qualifying matches.
As a result Calderwood, who’s steam sit bottom of the SPL table, won’t have his full complement of players to begin preparing for the visit of the Dons, who are only a point better off with a game more played, until next Wednesday at the earliest.
Towell was first in action as the Republic of Ireland began their campaign with a 2-1 win over Hungary in Sligo last night and apparently came through the full 90 minutes unscathed.
But the on-loan Celtic defender now faces the long trip to face Turkey in Manisa on Tuesday.
Hanlon, Wotherspoon, Booth and Griffiths, on-loan from Wolves, are all pencilled in for Scotland’s opening match against Bulgaria in Paisley on Monday night while Stephens is part of the Welsh squad travelling to face Montenegro the following evening.
That same night Palsson will be in action for Iceland, at home to Norway.
Given the distances Towell and Stephens have to travel it could well be next Thursday before they report back to East Mains.
As such, Calderwood will be grateful that the Aberdeen match has been put back 24 hours to a week on Sunday, giving his youngsters a much-needed extra day to recover and prepare for their return to club action.
Meanwhile, the annual Dnipro Kids Appeal dinner will take place at Easter Road on Friday, October 28. Tickets are priced £35.
Details can be obtained from email@example.com .
n Hibs’ Scottish Communities League Cup third round tie against Motherwell will take place at Fir Park on Tuesday, September 20 with a 7.45pm kick-off.