Midfielder John Fleck tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this week and is self-isolating, but while the remainder of the squad were retested and returned negative results, six players have not made the trip to the Algarve after being identified as “in the vicinity” of the Sheffield United man.
Striker Che Adams, centre-back Grant Hanley, goalkeeper David Marshall midfielder John McGinn, and right-back duo Stephen O’Donnell and Nathan Patterson will all play no part in tonight’s encounter at the Estadio Algarve against Frank de Boer’s side.
The affected players are not self-isolating themselves but have been left behind in Spain as a precaution.
Chelsea midfielder Billy Gilmour, who only joined up with the squad this week, and Manchester United’s Scott McTominay, who was en route to Portugal yesterday, are also expected to miss tonight’s friendly, but could be involved against Luxembourg on Sunday.
The enforced absence of the sextet could see Hearts ‘keeper Craig Gordon start in goals but the loss of both right-backs could prompt a rethink from Steve Clarke in terms of formation.
Speaking to Sky Sports earlier this week, Clarke said: “Every time we come together I say to the lads in training that everybody’s important; you never know when you're going to be asked to play.
"Certainly in these uncertain times, you never know when you're going to be asked to step up so hopefully they can all keep impressing. They’ve all impressed me so far in training which has been good to see.
"Billy Gilmour’s just joined the squad, Scott McTominay is on his way. So we're getting there, we’re getting the group together, and looking forward to the games.
"We wouldn’t want to brand them training games but they are friendly matches, and they’re there to be utilised to help us prepare for the first game in the Euros.
"That’s the end goal. We want to be at our best in the tournament and that’s still a little bit away so we'll use the two friendly matches to try and get better.”