Caley Thistle manager John Robertson says his players must deal with the weight of expectation to defeat League 2 side Edinburgh City in tonight’s Scottish Cup third round replay.
Inverness must face the Citizens all over again at Caledonian Stadium, after Liam Henderson’s late goal secured a 1-1 draw at Ainslie Park on November 25.
Robertson insists his players cannot afford to show any complacency against their opponents, who are two points clear at the top of League 2 with 11 wins from 13 matches so far.
Robertson said: “They will look at it and think they have held a strong Championship team – and that’s the right attitude to have.
“They have absolutely nothing to lose, and while people saw the first game as a potential shock, they’ll be expecting us to take care of the second leg.
“As favourites, that’s a pressure you have to live with at times and deal with it – but the players will not be allowed to be complacent.
“We will have to perform at our best. The players have to go out with the right mentality and attitude and play at a high tempo to make sure we qualify for the next round.”
Inverness will set up a fourth round home tie against Lowland League side East Kilbride should they progress tonight, however Robertson is refusing to plot a route through the competition until they have taken care of James McDonaugh’s men.
He added: “We’re not even contemplating what the fourth round holds because that would be hugely disrespectful to Edinburgh City.
“We had them watched on Saturday and we’ll compare notes from the first game with the debrief we got at the weekend.
“In all, that’s three matches where we’ve taken a good look at them. We’ll go over their strengths and where we can exploit them.
“But we’re not looking at anything else – and we won’t look at anything else.
“It would be foolish and hugely disrespectful to do otherwise, and that’s not us. That’s not the way we operate here.
“We’ll have the players clued up for what is a really important match.”
Inverness remain light in numbers but Robertson will be boosted by the return of Nathan Austin to the squad following a thigh strain, with the Caley Jags boss adding: “We have the opportunity to freshen up two or three positions. We will do that, but it won’t weaken the team in any way.
“We have to have one eye on Friday night against Ayr United, but the team that plays against Edinburgh will have to be ready and capable of seeing us through to the next round.”