Ross County midfielder Dylan Dykes knows he must bide his time for a first team opportunity due to the strength of Stuart Kettlewell and Steven Ferguson’s squad.
Dykes netted twice to help County’s reserve side lift the North of Scotland Cup on Sunday, with a 3-2 victory over rivals Caley Thistle at Grant Street Park.
County have assembled a strong midfield for their Championship title bid, with the likes of Jamie Lindsay, Ross Draper, Iain Vigurs and Don Cowie among the Victoria Park squad.
That has meant limited opportunities for 22-year-old Dykes, who spent part of last season on loan at Stranraer, since signing a new one-year deal with the Staggies in the summer, with his only two starts coming in the early rounds of cup competitions.
With an IRN-BRU Cup last-16 tie at home to Montrose on Saturday, Dykes hopes his two-goal display can help his case for consideration.
Dykes said: “There are a lot of good boys in the reserve squad. Obviously the first team is a good quality squad as well, but these boys in the reserves can easily step up.
“The managers were there on Sunday as well, so everyone will have looked to impress.
“The first team is a big squad though. I’m just being patient, but I got two goals on Sunday so hopefully I have impressed, although everyone played well from man to man.
“It’s just the way it is now, there are a few fringe players not playing. We are just trying to play reserve games and catch the eye, that’s just how football is.”
Dykes, who was part of Kettlewell’s under-20s squad which won the Development League in 2017, and he was thrilled to secure another piece of silverware last weekend.
He added: “Richard Brittain had said beforehand how much he wanted to win the game, and all the boys did as well. It was a cup final against Inverness, our rivals.
“It was a good game, Inverness were competitive. We did the dirty side of the game in the second half, and our quality came out.”