Caley Thistle aim to give their nervy backline a shot in the arm before the transfer window closes on Friday night.
However, head coach Billy Dodds also stuck up for his under-fire defenders after a string of individual mistakes cost Inverness early-season points.
On Saturday, ICT are home to Dunfermline Athletic in the Championship, boosted by the year-long loan deal for midfielder Max Anderson, 22, from Premiership Dundee.
Fans are crying out for defensive cover, too, and Dodds confirmed it is the area he is keen to strengthen before the window closes on Friday night.
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— Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC (@ICTFC) August 30, 2023
‘We do not have poor defenders’
Former Scotland, Aberdeen and Rangers forward Dodds needs reinforcements and confirmed the club are considering loan or permanent moves for certain targets.
The manager was, though, at pains to point out his current defensive players have not suddenly become poor after proving in the past they can be competitive at Championship level.
He said: “People are having a pop at defenders and rightly so, because we can’t keep losing the goals we’re losing.
“Right now, we have defenders who are doing daft things and making poor decisions – but we do not have poor defenders.
“The boys who are here have proved that before. When Robbie Deas was out injured for a long time last season, these boys played alongside one another and we got results.
“They are not poor defenders, they are just defenders who are having a poor time.
“While the mistakes can’t continue, we have to realise these boys are not as bad as they are showing right now. They are making poor decisions.”
Stronger competition is required
Anderson was arrival number six during the transfer window for ICT. He followed right-back Jake Davidson, winger Luis Longstaff, midfielder Charlie Gilmour, and striker Adam Brooks and Harry Lodovica.
A deeper playing pool, however, is required according to Dodds to help up the ante in their bid to turn their form around.
He said: “We need to freshen the squad. Max Anderson coming in this week has given everyone a wee energy surge.
“There are places up for grabs, and if you’re not at it, you will lose your place. It has to be that way at a football club.
“At certain clubs, maybe even this one, perhaps some players feel they will play even if they don’t play their best. We can’t have that.
“Competition brings an edge where you can go and have a good game. It can help get the team a vital win.”
Anderson is ‘breath of fresh air’
Dodds, who also feels his front-line should be more ruthless, was thrilled to land once-capped Scotland under-21 ace Anderson from Championship winners Dundee.
The creative midfielder has won two promotions to the top-flight at Dens Park and Dodds explained he made an impression as soon as he hit the training ground.
He added: “Max is a well-moulded, genuine kid – not just as a footballer, but as a person.
“He’s been a breath of fresh air, even within 24 hours.
“He can get stuck in and get about the pitch and has the desire and energy we need in the team.
“Some of the boys are maybe feeling sorry for themselves, especially as we’re not winning games.
“He’s also technically very good and gets forward.
“I wasn’t sure whether he’d be available, but I made the call to Dundee manager Tony Docherty, and he and Dundee were excellent.
“I’m hopeful Max will help us to string some results together.
“I don’t want to put too much pressure on him either, but he’s the type of player I like and the type who can give this team a lift. Hopefully he does that on Saturday.”