Labant Battles On

Vladimir Labant's scan reveals that the damage to his back is minimal - though he is extremely doubtful for Saturday.

An x-ray on Tuesday showed bruising to the muscle in the back, but nothing worse.

Says club doctor Ges Steinbergs:

"Thankfully the x-ray is clear, because it could have been broken ribs or damage to the spine, which would easily have ended his season.

"As it is, this is the best possible result, although he was very stiff after the game and is still sore today.

"We won't know for certain for a few days if he will be available at the weekend; if the spasm lifts quickly it might be okay, but it is the back's way of preventing further damage - and it is painful.

"He is having painkillers, and hopefully that will do the trick."

Vladimir joins Grant McCann, injured while playing for Northern Ireland last week, Titi Camara, and Gary Charles on the injured list.

Titi has an ankle problem, while Gary is waiting for the fluid to drain from his knee after a minor operation last week.

Don Hutchison is, of course, on the long term injured list after a recent cruciate operation.