Ghana coach Milovan Rajevac is still in two minds whether to risk Michael Essien from the start of the African Nations Cup, which gets underway on Sunday.
The Chelsea midfielder has been out with a hamstring injury since early December and his participation in the January 10-31 competition has been in doubt ever since.
The Black Stars are already without a host of key players through injury - captain Stephen Appiah, his deputy John Mensah, John Paintsil and Laryea Kingston are all missing - and risking his star man may further hamper their bid for a fifth continental crown.
With Essien due to join up with the rest of the squad in Swaziland on Tuesday, Rajevac said on Kick Off Ghana: "We will see after his injury whether we will use him from the beginning of the tournament. We will decide on that when he is here.
"There is a hierarchy in the team and in the absence of Stephen Appiah and John Mensah, Essien is next as captain.
"I expect that with his professionalism he will lead the team well. He will definitely be captain with a lead role to play."
Ghana begin their campaign against Togo next Monday, before further match-ups with Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso in Group B.
Despite the current injury crisis, goalkeeper Richard Kingson has called on the senior players to come to the fore.
The Wigan player said: "The injuries have been unfortunate, but we have to carry on.
"In the current situation, some of us will have to play really big roles because of our experience at this level and I am happy to do that."