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Caley Thistle head coach Billy Dodds urges strikers to discover ruthless streak

Caley Thistle head coach Billy Dodds.
Caley Thistle head coach Billy Dodds.

Billy Dodds is urging his Caley Thistle front men to believe in themselves to fire Caley Thistle back to winning ways.

The Inverness CT head coach was reflecting on his team’s first loss of the Championship season, which was a 2-1 defeat at lowly Hamilton on Saturday.

Michael Gardyne’s late consolation was only just that after goals from Lewis Smith and Andy Ryan put Accies in control.

A red card for home midfielder Reegan Mimnaugh after just half an hour gave ICT plenty of time to find a response, but Gardyne’s goal came in the 92nd minute and the clock ran down swiftly in their bid for an equaliser.

Kilmarnock’s 3-1 defeat at home to Raith Rovers keeps the Caley Jags three points clear at the top.

However, with a goal return of 10 goals from eight fixtures, three other sides have outscored the Highlanders. Partick Thistle have netted 17, Arbroath 16 and Raith Rovers 14.

Call to be more dangerous and direct

Dodds hopes the strikers display their killer touch against Elgin City in the SPFL Trust Trophy on Saturday, then at home to Morton in the league seven days later.

He said: “I’m not criticising my forwards, but they need to believe in themselves, to be more dangerous, more direct and more positive at times.

“I felt there were goals there to be had. The one player that did show that, even before his goal, was Michael Gardyne. He scored a beauty.

“There was a little surge from us towards the end, but it wasn’t enough and you have to credit Hamilton for working hard. We had four or five chances, but ultimately, we could not get the equaliser.

Caley Thistle striker Billy Mckay (right) replaced Manny Duku at half-time against Hamilton.

“While I’m disappointed with Saturday, I’m not downbeat. My players will go again.”

Opportunity spurned as Killie slip up

Six wins and a draw before the set-back at Accies was sensational form and the chance to round off the first quarter in front of the rest is what matters to Dodds.

He added: “I’m disappointed, I’m not going to hide it. You get greedy and you want to keep the run going and get more points on the board, because it has been a brilliant start.

“It can still be a brilliant start if we beat Morton and take 22 points from our first quarter. I’d be more than delighted.

“But I still get the feeling that Saturday was an opportunity spurned. We have to be better than that. We lost two bad goals and it gave us too much to do in the second half.

“I told the players at half-time when we were 2-0 down that I believed in them. We created four or five good chances, but I expected a bombardment.”

 

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