Paul Hartley insists his work has just begun at Cove Rangers after winning the League 2 manager of the month award.
The Cove boss, who took over from John Sheran in the summer, has taken the Aberdeen club to the top of the table in their first month as a SPFL side.
It was a double celebration for the club as on-loan midfielder Declan Glass also scooped the player of the month award for August. Glass joined from Dundee United in July and has four goals in 10 games.
Cove resume their league campaign today with a trip to Brechin City and Hartley, who last won a monthly award with Dundee in March 2017, reckons this is just the start of Cove’s hard work.
He said: “It’s great to get these awards but it’s down to the work of the players and the staff. This is not just off-the-cuff stuff; the work we’ve done on the training ground, hopefully you can see that on a Saturday.
“We have got a long way to go – this is just the start of the journey. Everything we’ve asked of the players, they’ve taken on board. We have brought our own ideas to the team – video analysis, recovery, preparation, diet. There’s been a lot of fitness work and while the lads were fit, you can always get fitter.
“(Fitness coach) Tam Ritchie has got so much experience and having worked with him as a player and what he did for my career – and others – you can see the benefit. Gordon Young is one of the best assistants I’ve worked with on the training pitch, as he has so many fresh ideas each session.
“I couldn’t ask for any more of the players. There’s players that have played league football so they know what we’re trying to do.”
Glass, like Hartley, dropped down from the Championship to continue his career in League 2. He started with two assists on his debut against Caley Thistle before scoring on his home bow in the 3-0 win over Raith Rovers.
Hartley added: “He’s got a great personality and that struck me. He’s fitted in really well and the players like him. He’s been terrific and I’ve really enjoy working with him.”
Cove’s trip to Glebe Park today comes with Brechin appointing a new manager, Hartley’s former Celtic team-mate Mark Wilson who was most recently with Airdrieonians. Brechin have won just one of their last five games and sit second-bottom of League 2 after back-to-back relegations.
“They will get a lift from the new manager and I do think they’re in a false position,” added Hartley. “We need to make sure we’re at the top of our game and work hard – that’s first and foremost.”
St Johnstone loanee John Robertson will miss out due to an ankle problem but Fraser Fyvie, who missed last week’s game against Connah’s Quay, and Chris Antoniazzi could be available.
Former Cove midfielder Hamish Macleod has left the club to join junior side Banks o’Dee.