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Schalk desperate for Staggies chance

Alex Schalk scored the winner in Ross County's League Cup final win against Hibs.
Alex Schalk scored the winner in Ross County's League Cup final win against Hibs.

Alex Schalk believes he is the man to solve Ross County’s goalscoring problems.

The Staggies are the lowest scorers in the Premiership with just 10 goals this term, with six of them coming from leading scorer Liam Boyce.

The lack of goals have contributed to a poor run of form, which has seen Jim McIntyre’s side sink to the bottom of the table without a win in 10 matches ahead of today’s trip to St Johnstone.

Dutch forward Schalk was sidelined for a month with a knee ligament injury earlier in the season but has made a bright impact since returning, scoring a late consolation goal in the Staggies’ 4-1 loss against Motherwell last month.

Schalk feels back to full sharpness and ready to be handed the responsibility of getting the goals to fire the Dingwall side back up the table. The 24-year-old said: “It’s not like the confidence is low or anything, obviously we do believe in ourselves.

“But in the last couple of games it’s been about final passes and taking chances to score goals.

“I can’t really point the finger right on to what the problem is but even shots on goal where a goalkeeper needs to make a save – that gives us a lift. I think I showed that against Rangers when I came on and the week before I scored against Motherwell. I feel like after those two games and in training, I’m really ready again.

“I hope to bring that power and energy into a game again.”

Schalk finished last season on a high with nine goals after the turn of the year, including the winning goal in the League Cup final victory against Hibs at Hampden Park in March.

The former Netherlands under-21 attacker admits the season has been stop-start, having made just four league starts, and he added: “I was disappointed with my injury, that’s the biggest thing.

“From the start of the season I didn’t really have back-to-back games. I started against Dundee in the first game then I was out again.

“It’s been a bit in and out for me. Then I got the injury which was bad timing, although it’s always bad timing to get an injury.

“Now I’m back to top fitness. I want to get my rhythm back and grow my confidence.”

County have not been cut adrift at the bottom, with Hamilton Accies, Motherwell and Dundee all just a point above them, and Schalk says a top-half finish remains his target.

He said: “With the group we have we should be in the top six.

“I think we’ve got enough quality to be in the top six. We have been unlucky along the road so far as well, we just have to flip the coin and beat St Johnstone.”

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