Caley Thistle defender Wallace Duffy hopes his side can get Neil McCann’s temporary reign as manager off to a flying start against Hearts tomorrow.
Former Dundee boss McCann has been drafted in as an interim replacement for John Robertson, who has undertaken a period of compassionate leave following a family bereavement.
The 46-year-old will take charge of the Highlanders for an unspecified length of time, until Robertson is ready to return.
Caley Jags’ players were addressed by chief executive Scot Gardiner on Monday to inform them of Robertson’s leave of absence.
Although Duffy says the news came as a shock, he says they must refocus under McCann as they look to return to winning ways following Tuesday’s 2-2 draw against Alloa Athletic.
Speaking prior to confirmation of McCann’s arrival, Duffy said: “We have had a tough few days given what’s happened with the manager.
“We just need to respect his privacy and give him all the time he needs. We just have to focus on the games coming up.
“We just have to be 100% focused and ready. We want to get results for the manager, the chairman – just everybody at the club.
“It’s not ideal, but we just need to keep focusing on trying to get as many wins for this club as we can.”
Inverness conceded a late equaliser against the Wasps to prevent them moving to within a point of the play-off places, with the Highlanders now sixth in the table.
Duffy is frustrated his side were unable to convert large spells of dominance into a victory against Alloa, as was the case in their 1-0 defeat to Queen of the South last Wednesday.
With league leaders Hearts the next opponents in McCann’s first game in charge, Duffy expects the Jambos to have more of a go, which could leave Inverness with more space to play.
The former St Johnstone defender added: “We have not really broken down many teams that have sat in deep against us.
“That’s something we do work on in training. It’s a bit frustrating.
“Hearts are going to come here and try and dominate the ball. I think that could suit us, because we will probably be sitting a bit deeper.
“We will try and hit them on the break and we will see how other teams like it.
“We’ve got powerful players up front, and we’ve got pace. If we can get the right service to them against Hearts, I think we can cause them real problems.
“With the games coming so fast, if we get a bad result we can try and rectify it much quicker.
“Previously we have had weeks off, we have had a bad result, then another few weeks off.
“I think the more games quicker the better. We can build momentum and try to rectify any bad results.”
Duffy opened his professional goalscoring account with a stunning long-range goal to cancel out Innes Cameron’s opener, before James Keatings looked to have secured all three points shortly afterwards.
The 21-year-old says his side’s failure to hold on for all three points, with Miles Storey seeing a penalty saved, dimmed his delight at getting off the mark.
He added: “The goal doesn’t really mean a lot now, given the fact we never went away with the three points.
“It was my first professional goal – and it was a good one. It was my left foot as well, which makes it even better.
“It might look and feel a bit better once this result has sunk in. I’m just focusing on the result and it’s disappointing.
“I’m proud to score my first one, so hopefully I’ll get a few more.”