MIKE BLAIR has revealed that he could go back into the transfer market to bid for one of Worcester Warriors’ three Scotland internationals if they become available. The Edinburgh coach still has some spare cash in his budget for the coming season, and, with Worcester apparently doomed to go into administration, he is keeping a close eye on the situation.

Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs issued a winding-up petition against the English Premiership club last week, and if administration follows Worcester would receive a 35-point penalty and would almost certainly be relegated at the end of the coming season. They could also be forced to sell or release leading players such as Duhan van der Merwe, Rory Sutherland and Murray McCallum, all of whom used to play for Edinburgh.

Blair has added sparingly to his squad over the close season, making five signings: Scotland forward Sam Skinner, props Nick Auterac and Jamie Jack, winger Wes Goosen and back-up stand-off Bruce Houston, who has joined on a partnership deal with Heriot’s. He appears not to see any gaping holes in the squad, but if a Scottish international were to become available, he could be tempted to make a bid with an eye towards future seasons.

Asked if he was interested in the three exiles, Blair said: “Yes. The difficult bit is it might not be right for now, but it might be right for tomorrow. So do you take the hit now, for it to be right for next [season]? So what I mean by that is that with not having much budget now, can we really stress that and get someone in who we’d really want for the following year? It’s complicated.

“We do have a little bit of budget left for emergencies, injuries and what have you, but we’ve not earmarked anyone. Obviously the Worcester situation is one that is ongoing and once we get clarity on what exactly is happening there we can have further discussions on it.

“But at the moment we’re sitting back and waiting for that to play out. Hopefully, they get bought out, they resolve things and they’re able to continue how they’re going. If the situation changes and players become available then we’ll have to see how that fits with what we want.”

Worcester’s former chief executive Jim O’Toole announced yesterday that he has a plan to take over the club and “ensure their long-term sustainability”. However, that plan depends on the club going into administration first. Worcester are due to play Glasgow Warriors in Inverness on Friday in a pre-season friendly, and as things stand that match is set to go ahead as planned.

Meanwhile, Blair has confirmed that Argentinian star Emiliano Boffelli is unlikely to be available until mid-October. Boffelli, nicknamed King Boff by his Edinburgh team-mates, starred in the Pumas’ 25-18 win over the All Blacks on Saturday, scoring 20 points as his team won an international in New Zealand for the first time. Argentina have three more games to play in the Rugby Championship before Boffelli can come back to Scotland.

“I sent him a crown as a WhatsApp emoji,” Blair said when asked if he had been in touch with the back-three player since the All Blacks match. “He’s been great. We’ve been in touch, no real detail or anything, just ‘How’s it going? How’s training? Are you enjoying yourself?’, all that kind of stuff.

“I think he’s keen to get back. My understanding is that he really enjoyed last season and he’s keen to get back. The first game he played for us was Dragons away on the Friday or Saturday, having played on the Sunday against Ireland. And he played really well. So he’s just keen to get back playing for us, but we’ve got to manage that with getting the best out of him for the whole season.

“Boff is ongoing. We don’t have to manage him. We’ve got a certain amount of Scottish guys who we have to manage – play a certain amount of rugby, get rest at certain periods. Boff we don’t have to do that, but we also appreciate that you want to get the best out of people throughout the season. You don’t just want to burn them out completely by November.

“His last game is in South Africa, so we’re just catching up in the next couple of days, He needs some visa stuff to do and he needs a little break as well. We’ll hopefully see him in October.”

Edinburgh are at home to London Scottish on Friday night in the first of two pre-season friendlies. Their second is away to Benetton on Friday 9 September, and their URC campaign begins with a home match against the Dragons on Saturday 17.