ROSS County’s new management team will put aside long-term aims until the short-term future of the Dingwall club is secured, according to assistant Billy Dodds.
Jim McIntyre was introduced as Staggies boss on Wednesday following the departure of Derek Adams with the Highland side sitting bottom of the Scottish Premiership without a point from five games.
McIntyre brought Dodds with him from Queen of the South and the former Scotland striker is looking to make an immediate impact at a club who finished fifth and seventh in their two top-flight seasons, starting in today’s home game against Motherwell.
“The aim is to make sure we stay in the league,” he said. “Everybody knows Ross County is well run and well structured and have been established for a wee while now and it is our job to make sure they remain here.
“So of course it is long term but we have a job to do short term, we are not kidding ourselves on with that. We are bottom of the league with no points. So we have to assess quickly, look at the players and try to lift the players because if you are a footballer and getting bad results, you are feeling downbeat.
“So it is up to us to lift the boys and make sure we get them prepared and organised to try to get the first points on the board. If you do that, it is a natural progress where you get confidence and you go on to better performances.”
Adams brought in ten, mostly foreign, new players in the summer, who were supplemented by three arrivals on deadline day following his sacking – Michael Gardyne, Jackson Irvine and Darren Barr. Dodds insists youngsters will get their chance at County under the new regime but only if they are up to the mark.
He said: “Young boys will be given an opportunity here if they are good enough. We had young boys at Queen of the South, Jim has worked with young boys all the time. We will assess everything but right now it is short-term with long-term afterwards.”
Motherwell manager Stuart McCall senses a determination among his players to turn their season around in Dingwall again. McCall’s side dug out a 2-1 win over County in December last year to bounce back from their shock cup defeat by Albion Rovers and a Fir Park thrashing by Celtic. They now return to the Highlands looking to stop a run of four consecutive defeats.
McCall said: “Their players will be out to make an impression and I’m sure Jim and Billy will be out to make an impression themselves. It will make it slightly tougher, but when you go through a run like we’re going through, it doesn’t matter who we are playing. It’s what we do as individuals and as a group. We have to be fully focused on our job.
“Last season was a little bit of a turning point going up there. We had been knocked out the cup and been beaten heavily at home to Celtic, and we went up there and got probably a lucky 2-1 victory with a couple of deflected goals. We went on to win six on the bounce so it’s something we’d like to do again.”