Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes is confident Scotland cap Andy Considine will sign a contract extension early in the new year.
Long-serving defender Considine is out of contract at the end of the season.
There is an appearance-related clause inserted in his current deal which states an extra year will be triggered if he plays a certain number of games.
Confident the 33-year-old will satisfy that clause, Aberdeen want to push through a deal as soon as possible before that number of games is met.
Considine broke into the club’s all-time top five appearance list this month with his 536th game, moving ahead of Gothenburg Great Jim Leighton.
McInnes said: “We have nothing agreed yet with Andy, but we are getting a bit closer to it and I don’t anticipate it being an issue. It is just a case of Andy discussing it with his family and working out what he wants to do.”
In a landmark season for the Pittodrie Youth graduate, Considine also broke into the Scotland set-up.
He received a debut cap in starting a 1-0 Nations League defeat of Slovakia in October and retained his starting slot for the 1-0 defeat of Czech Republic.
National boss Steve Clarke retained faith with Considine and called him up for his next squad, starting the defender in the 1-0 Nations League loss in Slovakia.
Should Considine secure another year at Pittodrie, he could potentially overtake Stewart McKimmie and Bobby Clark in the all-time appearance list.
Former club captain McKimmie is fourth in the list with 561 games, while legendary keeper Clark is third on 595.
McInnes “We are hoping that by the turn of the year Andy will have that signed. I don’t see any real issues with that.”
Aberdeen had a request rejected by the government to have 1,000 fans inside Pittodrie for tomorrow’s Premiership clash with Ross County.
A request for 2,000 fans at the Boxing Day game against St Johnstone was also refused.
The Scottish Government has announced a £55 million funding package for sports in the form of grants and low-interest loans.
More than half that money, £30m, is earmarked for football, while rugby will receive £20m.
The remaining £5m will be available to support other sport.
McInnes is frustrated clubs in England have recently welcomed supporters back while Pittodrie will again be empty tomorrow.
In England stadia in Tier 1 are permitted to hold up to 4,000 spectators and grounds in Tier 2 can welcome up to 2,000 of their faithful.
In Scotland, only clubs in Levels 0 or 1 can welcome supporters, with that number capped at 300.
There is no route for that number to be incrementally increased in Level 1 following successful games with fans.
In Level 2, which Aberdeen currently occupies, there is no scope for supporters in stadia.
Aberdeen successfully held a test event at Pittodrie in September where 300 season ticket holders were present in the South Stand to witness a 1-0 defeat of Kilmarnock.
Those select 300 are the only supporters to have been inside Pittodrie since football shut down in March because of the pandemic.
McInnes said: “When you look at what is happening down the road and see clubs getting a couple of thousand fans into a stadium you can hear the difference it makes to the atmosphere.
“We’re all keen to get supporters back in as quickly as possible.
“However, like most things it can’t happen quickly enough.
“The chairman has made a valid case and raised valid points about how he views it but I’ll leave it to the chairman to discuss that.
“From my point of view of course getting fans in and some sort of atmosphere in games is what we all want.’’