Saturday 10th August, 2013 at 2:02pm
The players will head up North today in preparation for the next chapter in our SPFL Premiership season which will see us take on the previous winners of the First Division, Ross County. There is little doubt that the Dingwall side had an incredible first year in the top flight and only just missed out on a European place in the final week of the season.
Alan Archibald admitted that he has been very impressed with the way the Highlanders have approached the top flight:
“They are a very good side with plenty of talent in their squad. They kept the bulk of the squad that got them there and have been able to add quite a few quality names to supplement their team. I expect nothing other than a very difficult fixture against a side who will be determined to build on their good performance last weekend against Celtic.”
There was widespread praise heaped upon the Jags after their opening salvo against Dundee United, so how have the players reacted to that, according to the gaffer?
“The one thing we work on a lot here is making sure the players believe that they are here on merit and are able to compete with the best sides in the country. If there were any doubts before the United game I hope that has been dispelled but all we have done is set some standards and it is imperative that we maintain these standards in each and every game, if we drop standards our results will drop too. My squad is getting just a little bigger which is good news and that leaves me with a lot of thinking to do as far as team selection is concerned. I managed to give quite a few of the squad some playing time between the United game and the Ayr game which is good and will give me difficult selections before each and every game.”
So how do we stand ahead of the game tomorrow as far as injuries and other matters are concerned?
“Injury wise, Jordan McMillan is still out. He has an ankle injury which is starting to clear up and hope it is not too long before he comes back into the plans. Kris Doolan did not train on Thursday, we will monitor him today and then see what happens overnight before I make any decision on him, but on the positive side Aaron Muirhead is back in full training and he is available for selection. It was pleasing to bring in Kallum yesterday and that means another option for the forward area of the field. I need to see how he looks in training today and also we need to ensure his International Clearance comes through to allow him to play, so I will sleep on that overnight.”
Finally a word for the support from Archie:
“It really was incredible. I watched back the United game again and the noise level coming from the stands was fantastic. Even against Ayr in midweek we had over 2000 which is a lot higher than in similar matches in recent years. So, I am sure we will get the same backing for the game tomorrow and hopefully we can give them our first league win of the season.”