Motherwell: Charles Dunne injury opens door for Bevis Mugabi
Motherwell defender Charles Dunne faces at least a month out after picking up a groin injury during the international break.
The 26-year-old has played a key part in the Fir Park side's bright start to the Scottish Premiership campaign.
It could mean new signing Bevis Mugabi is thrust in for Saturday's visit to Hearts.
The Uganda international, 24, agreed a deal until January on Thursday after a trial period.
"We had Bevis training with us so this has probably speeded up that process," said manager Stephen Robinson.
"Bevis brings a level of experience from League One and League Two level in England. He's played international football as well.
"He's a big, strong boy and he's decent on the ball. We were trying to find a way to do the deal anyway but it became a necessity when Charles got injured."
Motherwell travel to Tynecastle buoyed by back-to-back wins over Hamilton and Hibs and aiming to avenge a League Cup defeat at Fir Park.
"That's been the one blip in our season," said Robinson of the 2-1 home defeat last month. "We didn't take the game to them, we had too many who underperformed. We didn't hurt them at all.
"That's something we've improved on in the past few weeks, there's an end product to our game. There's balls going down the sides into strikers and there's more penetration in our game."
Hearts have not won at home in the league since March, with fans reacting angrily to draws against Ross County and Hamilton this season.
With the hosts joint-bottom of the table, on just two points from four games, in-form Motherwell midfielder Liam Donnelly hopes to heap on more misery.
"You always try and silence the home crowd," said Donnelly, who returned to Northern Ireland duty last week after a five-year absence. "We want to put pressure on them and hopefully get the win."