Jim Goodwin has told Jay Emmanuel-Thomas that he is not fit enough to play in his Aberdeen team.
The 31-year-old striker, who signed from Livingston last summer, was on the bench against Motherwell for Goodwin’s first game in charge of the Dons last month but remained unused and has not featured in the subsequent three matches.
Ahead of the cinch Premiership game against Hibernian on Saturday, where Goodwin looks for his first win as boss of the Granite City club, the former St Mirren manager said: “I had a good conversation with Jay when I came in.
“He has a little bit of work to do physically. It’s as simple as that.
“He is not fit enough to play the type of football that I want us to play.
“I have been very honest with him on that. He knows what he has to do.
“He is working hard behind the scenes, he is doing extra with the sports science team and that’s all we can ask of him at the moment.”
Goodwin revealed some good news on the injury front with defender Andy Considine, out since last August with a cruciate ligament injury, and forward Marley Watkins, who has not played since injuring his foot against Dundee on Boxing Day, are back in the squad.
The Pittodrie boss, whose side are 10th with three games remaining before the split albeit only five points behind fourth-placed Hibs, said: “Andy Considine is back in among things with the squad, as is Marley Watkins.
“I am not suggesting for a minute that I am expecting miracles from the two guys, they have been out for a hell of a long time so we need to be fair to them and manage them properly.
“So we have had good dialogue with the medical team and the sports science team to put a plan together to see when the earliest opportunity we can get the guys back onto the pitch because they are two big players, two very influential players when fit and good members of the squad.
“They trained really well today, they have trained really well in the last couple of weeks. We don’t have a great deal of time, I have spoken to the players about it.
“I would love to be able to give them a month to train and play some friendly games but we don’t have that luxury, so we have to get our best team on the pitch as soon as possible, that’s the conversation we will be having this afternoon.
“Both will be in the squad for the weekend, it is just a case of how many minutes we can get out of them.
“It is too early for Mikey Devlin and Matty Kennedy is working hard with the physio at the moment, but other than that we are in decent shape.”