Crystal Palace's preparations for Saturday teatime's Premier League match against West Ham have received a setback as manager Alan Pardew told the club's official website that influential defender Scott Dann is not fit enough to take his place at the heart of the back four.
Dann has not featured since pulling his hamstring in the League Cup defeat at Southampton in September, an injury that has seen him miss Palace's last two Premier League fixtures.
The Eagles have coped admirably without their captain so far, however, claiming four points from away matches at Sunderland and Everton. The Eagles upturn in fortunes means they sit in the top half as they prepare to welcome struggling West Ham this weekend.
Speaking to the club's official website, Pardew confirmed that this weekend comes too soon for 29-year-old former Birmingham man Dann.
Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew
"Scott Dann won't make this game, but he is training," he said. "So he should be available for the next one, we think. Other than that we're okay."
One player who has not featured at all for Pardew's side this season is Loic Remy, who picked up a thigh injury shortly after pitching up at Selhurst Park on loan from Chelsea.
Both Remy and Pape Souare - who was involved in a serious car accident in early September - are on the long-term absentee list, though Pardew was cautiously optimistic that the on-loan striker may return before too long.
"We still think the November, December period [for Remy]," he said. "The back-end of November we should see him, he's progressing well."
The news on Souare was less positive, with Pardew saying: "He's on a long recovery time - he's just in that process really."
The absence of Dann means that James Tomkins is likely to start against the club he left in the summer, with Pardew admitting in the build-up to the game that he had tried to sign the 27-year-old for Newcastle during his time at St. James' Park.
A Palace win could see them climb into the top five if other results go their way, which would be a mightily impressive turnaround given they lost their opening two matches of the season.
Find out where and when to watch the match, along with other pre-match information, by clicking here.
Have something to tell us about this article?