Caley Thistle manager John Robertson insists securing a promotion play-off place gives him a welcome opportunity to rest his tired Highlanders squad.
Inverness guaranteed themselves a top-four finish on Saturday despite going down 2-0 at home to Dundee United, with Dunfermline’s loss against Queen of the South ensuring the Fifers will not be able to catch Caley Jags.
Inverness will face Ayr United in their first play-off tie, with the team which finishes third in the Championship enjoying home advantage in the second leg.
The winner of that tie will face second-placed United, with the victorious side setting up a showdown with the second-bottom Premiership team.
In the meantime Caley Thistle face Alloa Athletic away on Saturday and Dunfermline at home the following week.
Robertson, who has given his players the early part of this week off, insists his players must take the opportunity to relax ahead of their promotion tilt.
Robertson said: “When Dundee United got the second goal, it kind of took the wind out of our sails.
“The boys looked tired, as they have been through a very heavy schedule. We have had a long trip down to Hampden, and then we were back down to Morton on Tuesday night.
“We have not got the biggest squad due to injuries, so we looked tired. In that 20 minute spell at the start of the second half, we looked a very tired team.
“It was not until we got the subs on the boys had a wee bit more energy about them.
“It was not the way we wanted to do it, but getting into the top four was the first aim. It’s over a season.
“They have given us everything, and we have got to the play-offs. Now we have got to rest the players over the next few days.
“We will give them a few days off and then start to get them ready and ease them into the next two matches to be prepared for the play-offs.”
Among the Inverness players currently sidelined through injury are skipper Carl Tremarco and goalkeeper Mark Ridgers, while defender Coll Donaldson returned to the bench on Saturday having also missed a fortnight through injury.