Caley Thistle defender Jamie McCart feels tonight’s opponents Ayr United can take inspiration from last season’s surprise package Livingston in the hunt for Championship promotion.
Ayr have made an excellent start to the campaign after winning the League 1 title last term, with Ian McCall’s men two points clear at the top of the table after 15 games.
The Honest Men are aiming to emulate Livi, who won back-to-back promotions to the Premiership after stepping up from the third tier last season, and McCart expects to face a side brimming with confidence at Somerset Park this evening.
McCart, who faced Ayr last season during a loan spell with Alloa Athletic, said: “Maybe you just need to look at Livingston – sometimes you can never predict.
“They have got a plan, and they all stick to it. In football, that’s invaluable if everyone buys into what you are doing.
“You could probably never have foreseen them doing this well at this stage, but it’s up to us to stop them.
“It will be a great atmosphere – it always is at Somerset Park.
“It will be a really tough one, especially with them coming off the back of their 5-0 win over Dundee United last week.
“They will be raring to go. We know what to expect from them though, they are a physical team.
“They have got a few players in form, so it will be difficult. If we can focus on our own game and play to our own strengths I’m sure we can get a result.”
Inverness returned to winning ways with a 6-1 Scottish Cup replay victory over Edinburgh City on Tuesday, in their first outing since their impressive 25-match unbeaten league run was ended in Saturday’s 3-2 home loss to Falkirk.
Former Celtic player McCart feels the result has put John Robertson’s men back on the right track, and he added: “We wanted to win on Tuesday, but to win it in such a way was a big confidence booster.
“Especially since we were overwhelming favourites for it, it was good to put down a statement like that and do it with such style.
“After we suffered our first defeat, maybe it will turn out to be a blessing in disguise. It could give us the boot up the backside.
“It was good. Sometimes cup games can be tricky, especially against lower league teams as we found in the away game.
“To bring them back up here and put six past them was brilliant for us.”
McCart has stepped in at left back in recent matches, with the 21-year-old adding: “We are quite light on players just now, and boys need to step up in different positions from time to time. I’m happy to do that.
“In a heavy schedule, we will need everyone, so I’m just happy to get the game time.
“I played there quite a lot when I was younger, and I played a lot of friendlies there with Celtic when they were short of players.
“It gives you a bit more freedom on the ball and allows you a bit more space to play. I quite enjoy it there.”