Billy Dodds was thrilled to see his Caley Thistle side win in the right fashion as they defeated Peterhead 2-0 in their Premier Sports Cup opener.
Second half goals from Manny Duku and Aaron Doran earned Dodds a victory in his first competitive match in charge against Jim McInally’s League Two visitors.
The Blue Toon were well organised and showed the occasional threat in attack, but it was a deserved victory, which puts ICT on three points in Group A.
Cutting edge is all first half lacked
Dodds said: “I enjoyed it. We played some lovely stuff and worked really hard, but we have been doing that since I came into the club.
“We want to play a certain way. It is hard work and the boys know that. We could have been more clinical in the first half. We had a lot of chances and we got a wee bit exasperated at times. We were searching for perfection.
“I told them to relax and take their chances in the second half and that’s what they did. We played a lot of good football, so all round it was good.
“In terms of fitness for the boys who have just come back, they got more minutes and we scored a couple of great goals.”
Fans liked what they saw from ICT
The crowd of several hundred back inside the Caledonian Stadium liked what they saw and Dodds added: “If we can give them that, and add the finishes then they will support us.
“They must like the football, the tempo, the pace of the game. I don’t want to just move it slowly when I get the ball. I want us to react when we lose the ball. I want a high tempo game, rather than it be slow-paced.
“The boys know that and, to be fair, since I have come to this club, I cannot give them anything but praise. They soak up what you say and try to do what you want.
“That’s maybe frustrating at times, but I can only ask them to do what I want and that’s what they did again tonight.”
Enjoyment led to chances being taken
With the scoreline locked at 0-0 at the break, Dodds revealed: “All I said to the players is that they had played some really good stuff. All we need now is when we get a chance to go on and enjoy it and win it.
“If you don’t do that in the second half then you are kicking yourself, but they did it and I am delighted. I cannot ask any more from them.”
ICT host Stirling Albion on Saturday in their second cup fixture.
Hearts are the pace-setters with two wins from two, following their 3-0 victory against Cove Rangers at Tynecastle.