Staggies star Fraser will forever be in former manager’s debt, but not tonight

Marcus Fraser will remain with Ross County until 2018.

Ross County defender Marcus Fraser is keen to inflict cup pain on Neil Lennon tonight at Dingwall but will always feel a debt of gratitude to the Northern Irishman.

Fraser was given his Celtic debut by the then-Hoops manager back in February 2013 against Inverness.

With Lennon now in charge at Easter Road and back in the Premiership, Fraser knows to expect the toughest of tests in the live televised group match.

Fraser said: “I worked under Neil for most of my time at Celtic and he was really good with me. He gave me the opportunity to play for the first team and I’m grateful for that. It’s something I’ll never forget.

“He is a manager who knows how to set up his team and get his team winning. He’s done that at Celtic and Hibs, credit to him, but hopefully it doesn’t continue against us.

“Just as we are, Hibs will be looking at this as a big one before the league campaign gets going.

“If we can get that win on board it’ll be a big boost. It’s early to be talking about top six but, for both clubs, that’s certainly where both will be aiming.”

Fraser was looking forward to Hibs’ visit from the moment the draw was made and rates it as one of the most enticing ties of the group stages.

He said: “When the group draw came out everyone probably looked at this one as being the big one.

“But we knew we had to win the other two games first. Thankfully, we’ve done that and turned in two encouraging performances.”

County were solid and efficient in beating Alloa 2-0 in the competitive opener but let rip in style in Tuesday’s 6-0 thrashing of Montrose.

Fraser added: “Last year there were a couple of hiccups early on but in the first two games this year we’ve set things right with good results.

“We’re happy with that.

“It’s massive, particularly with Liam Boyce leaving for Burton. We’ve shown we’ve got attackers to get the goals and I’m delighted with them.

“I’m sure the atmosphere will be good against Hibs and we need to take care of business.

“Last year Hibs were favourites to come up and they did that.

“I’ve watched them a few times and they always impress me. They’ll be a good test for us.”