Hibs down to bare bones for Forfar clash as Jack Ross reveals ELEVEN players won't make trip

Jack Ross has just 13 outfield players available to him for Hibs’ Betfred Cup group clash with Forfar Athletic on Tuesday night.
Jack Ross has just 13 fit outfield players for the Betfred Cup match against ForfarJack Ross has just 13 fit outfield players for the Betfred Cup match against Forfar
Jack Ross has just 13 fit outfield players for the Betfred Cup match against Forfar

A combination of international duty, injuries, and precautionary self-isolation has sidelined 11 first-teamers, but the Easter Road head coach is confident his fringe players and youngsters can step up as Hibs aim to make it three wins on the bounce in the competition.

Goalkeeper Ofir Marciano, midfielder Alex Gogic, and defensive duo Paul McGinn and Ryan Porteous are all on international duty, while left-back Josh Doig is self-isolating as a precaution after Scotland Under-19 boss Billy Stark tested positive for coronavirus at the weekend.

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Scott Allan remains out of action with a health issue and he is joined on the sidelines by Paul Hanlon, who has been called into the Scotland squad, Joe Newell, Jamie Murphy, Lewis Stevenson, and Drey Wright.

Speaking ahead of the trip to Angus Jack Ross said: “I think we’ve got 11 out. We've got quite a few out on loan and beyond that we're at the stage of 16-year-olds and younger, but they won't be involved.

“They're just kids, plus there's the added complication of when players are tested before games.

“Everybody who's available for us at the club at the moment will be involved tomorrow.”

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Despite a late Scotland call-up for McGinn to bolster Steve Clarke’s defensive options, the Hibs boss insisted he would never block a player from representing their country.

Ross added: “I would never want to stand in the way of any of my players being involved with their country, even if it is just within the squad.”

The Easter Road head coach is now relying on his fringe players to do the business on the artificial turf at Station Park.

He continued: “Those who have played have done well and found a way to win two difficult games.

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"I’ve been really pleased with them. They will need to go and dig deep again tomorrow at another difficult venue on a difficult surface.

“We’ll be okay; we’ve got a good mentality in the group and we’re winning games so I’ve got every faith in them doing that again.”

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