Ross County attacker Michael Gardyne lamented his side’s slow start on the way to a 5-0 Scottish Premiership humbling at the hands of champions Celtic at Victoria Park on Saturday.
The Hoops were four goals to the good after just 35 minutes, with John Guidetti, Callum McGregor, Anthony Stokes and Jason Denayer on target in the one-sided opening half.
Stokes’ second sealed the victory shortly after the break much to the frustration of on-loan Dundee United forward Gardyne.
He said: “It wasn’t a great start from us. In the past couple of weeks we’ve been starting games well but we didn’t at all against Celtic.
“It’s bitterly disappointing. I know it was Celtic but we still wanted to compete and I don’t think we did as well as we could. In the last two games we’ve been brilliant, we’ve been getting in teams’ faces but we didn’t do that at all.
“We spoke about doing that before the game and pressing them. For whatever reason it never happened early on. They scored the early goals which was a massive setback for us.
“There were a few players saying a few things at the end of the game and the manager and Billy Dodds had their say as well. They weren’t happy, the players weren’t happy and we know it’s not good enough.
“Playing Celtic at home, they haven’t been great recently and we thought we could have done better. We need to come back. We’ll look at the video and the decision-making we could have done better.”
Gardyne was introduced as a first-half replacement for Darren Barr immediately after Celtic’s third goal. The 28-year-old was frustrated not to start the game against his former club but hopes he has done enough to convince McIntyre he is worthy of a start in Saturday’s bottom of the table encounter against St Mirren.
“I was disappointed I didn’t start, so I just wanted to go on and show the manager I wanted to start the game,” he said. “We were 3-0 down, so I wanted to show I was capable of starting next week. It hurts more because I wasn’t playing from the start but coming on I just wanted to work hard and try to do something when I had the ball.
“Next week at St Mirren is a massive game for us.”