John Robertson reckons Hibernian should be wary of facing Caley Thistle in the Scottish Cup quarter-finals.
As the only Championship side left in the competition the Caley Jags will have been everyone’s dream tie, according to the club boss.
However, after knocking out Livingston in last weekend’s fifth-round tie, Robertson believes the Hibees can be got at in their quarter-final tie at Easter Road at the end of the month.
Robertson said: “Everyone wanted us. We were a very popular team because everyone wanted the Championship team at home.
“Hibs will be absolutely delighted. Them and their fans will think it’s the best draw they could have got and the easiest route to a semi-final.
“Nearer the game, they will start to get nervous and think ‘what if it doesn’t go to plan?’ We have to capitalise on that.
“Yes they will be hot favourites but we’re more than capable. That should give our boys hope and belief that if we go down there, play very well and compete as we did against Livingston, get about Hibs and play with bravery than we’ve still got a chance of going through.
“Hibs are playing OK and scoring goals but they are conceding goals. We will look at their strengths and threats in attacking areas but let’s look at their defence. They do leak goals, so we can get at them. They were very good going forward at Ross County but in the second half, creaked under a bit of pressure.”
Their progression to the last eight is the 12th time in their 26-year existence they have made it to the Scottish Cup quarter-finals. Only one of those came prior to the club gaining promotion to the Championship in 2000 – Steve Paterson’s side during the 1995-96 season.
Robertson added: “When you consider the first 10 years of that was as a lower league team, it’s very difficult to get to a quarter-final from that position.
“If you’re looking at it from when Caley Thistle got to the Championship, which was in 2000, that’s 11 times in 20 years. It’s a very impressive stat and we need to crack on.
“We’ve got to four semi-finals and a final. We see the cup success we’ve had and want it to continue.”
Robertson’s main task this week has been preparing the side for Sunday’s Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer Challenge Cup semi-final against Rangers colts.
It is a task that has been made all the more difficult by the unpredictability of who will be available for Rangers.
The Ibrox club do not field a side in the SPFL Reserve League, instead competing in the Uefa Youth League, a cross-border reserve competition with other English and Scottish clubs and have an under-20s team in the Glasgow Cup.
Colt sides are allowed to field two players over the age of 21 and also use players who are currently on development loans at other clubs. Kieran Wright, on loan from Rangers’ development side to Alloa Athletic, played against Inverness in the Championship a fortnight ago.
Robertson said: “This is a team that very rarely plays together. They are allowed to recall loan players from development loans and field two over-age players. We don’t know what’s to come in terms of personnel.
“We’ve watched the Wrexham game from the last round and the games against Clyde and Celtic in the Glasgow Cup. We also watched the Atletico Madrid game yesterday.”