Rory McArdle injury adds to Aberdeen woes

Rory McArdle leaves St Mirren Park injured
McArdle was injured during the midweek defeat by St Mirren

Craig Brown could have lost Rory McArdle for the season but dismissed suggestions that he will rest key men ahead of the Scottish Cup semi-final.

McArdle has a dislocated shoulder that could take months to heal, while fellow Aberdeen defenders Zander Diamond and David McNamee are injury doubts.

The Dons host Hibernian on Saturday with both sides clear of relegation.

"We'll not deliberately weaken the team in any way. My priority is the next match," said Dons manager Brown.

Aberdeen take on second-top Rangers in midweek before facing Scottish Premier League leaders Celtic at Hampden next weekend for a place in the Cup final.

"We want to get points on the board," insisted Brown.

"I know the semi-final looms large on everyone's mind, but we want to get consistency of performance.

"We'll put out the team which we think is the appropriate one for the game."

McArdle and Diamond suffered injuries in a 3-2 midweek defeat away to St Mirren as the Dons' troubles continued - they have won only one of their last seven games.

With influential midfielder and captain Paul Hartley still out alongside long-term injury victims Yoann Folly, Darren Mackie and Fraser Fyvie, the treatment room at Pittodrie is busy.

"It's the walking wounded through there," Brown added.

With the matches against Rangers and Celtic to follow, Brown is not prepared to risk further injuries against Hibs and Diamond and McNamee will only play if they prove their fitness.

"If it was the last game of the season, Zander Diamond would play," he said.

"But, if it's going to make him a risk for Wednesday or next Sunday, we'll not take a chance with him."

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