Dundee United boss Thomas Courts has been given a boost ahead of Christmas with the news striker Marc McNulty could return to action in time for the festive fixtures and New Year derby with Dundee.

Sparky has been out of action since picking up an injury during a defeat by Hibs back in September, having to undergo surgery to repair a problem, but is now ahead of sechedule for his return.

Dundee United v Motherwell - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Marc McNulty in action during the Scottish Premiership match between Dundee United and Motherwell at Tannadice on December 26, 2020(Photo by Ross Parker/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Courts admits there needs to be some “patience” with the Scotland striker as he confessed he’s having to hold McNulty back from trying to do too much, too soon.

“Marc’s getting on really well,” Courts said [Courier]. “He’s a bit of a throwback player.

“Every day he misses football is a real frustration in his life. He pesters the medical staff every day and we are trying to hold him back.

“He’s had an operation in a really intricate part of his leg. We have to make sure we give him enough to make him feel like he is making progress but show a bit of patience too.

“Marc is ahead of schedule and I would say we are now looking at this side of New Year for his return now.

“We are starting to claw some days and weeks back from his timescale.”

Dundee United face Hibernian, St Mirren and Dundee over the festive period and it would seem very likely that he’s involved in at least one of those games.

The Dundee derby would be the perfect date for his return – although if he’s fit, Courts would undoubtedly want to have him in his squad for all three games as the Arabs look to secure a European spot for next season.

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