Dundee United v Ross County preview

Date published: Friday 3rd April 2015 6:09

However, Tony Dingwall is suspended and Michael Gardyne is ineligible under the terms of his loan deal from United.

Rocco Quinn, Ben Frempah and Richard Brittain are all back in training following long-term injuries but are not expected to feature while Darren Barr (knee) remains on the sidelines.

County defender Marcus Fraser has called on his team to remain focused in a league where every club is now “fighting and scratching” for victories.

Jim McIntyre’s side have won five and drawn one of their last six Scottish Premiership games to take them off the bottom of the table and up to tenth place, seven points ahead of basement club St Mirren – who host Celtic on Friday night – and three ahead of Motherwell as they prepare for Saturday’s trip.

While it looks like the Staggies have hit form at the right time in their bid to avoid the drop, the 20-year-old former Celtic man, who joined County in January, stressed that every club in the league has their own agenda in the closing stages of the campaign.

“I think it will go all the way to the end of the season,” he said. “Some clubs are fighting for their lives and a few of the clubs like St Johnstone, who we play after Dundee United, and Kilmarnock, who we played in our last game, are trying to get into the top six.

“Everyone will be fighting and scratching to get the three points.”

United have not won any of their last eight games – albeit four were against league leaders Celtic – and seem to now be suffering the effects of losing midfielders Gary Mackay-Steven and Stuart Armstrong to the Parkhead club in the transfer window.

However, Fraser, who returns after a hamstring complaint which kept him out of the 2-1 home win over Killie before the international break, will not underestimate Jackie McNamara’s side.

“I don’t think Dundee United are a different prospect now,” he said. “They still have good individual players who can hurt any team.

“It has just been a hard run of games for them and they will be trying to set it straight on Saturday.”

United will be without suspended defender Ryan McGowan. The Australia international lost his appeal against a two-match ban after being sent off for a lunge on Celtic’s Liam Henderson during a Scottish Cup tie at Parkhead last month.

Defender Calum Morris is also out with a thigh strain, while striker Mario Bilate is missing because of hamstring trouble. However, Sean Dillon is available again after a recent shin injury.

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