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Coyle’s super Staggies as manager praises his team

Ross County manager Owen Coyle has resigned.
Ross County manager Owen Coyle has resigned.

Ross County manager Owen Coyle has praised his players for their response to being written off in their efforts to remain in the Premiership.

County are still bottom of the table but have reduced the gap between themselves and Hamilton Accies to just two points after taking four points from their two most recent matches against Dundee and Hearts.

Although the Staggies have shown a strong improvement from their alarming dip in form, Coyle insists his players must see it through by prolonging their unbeaten run, with St Johnstone next up at McDiarmid Park on Saturday.

Coyle said: “People were looking to write us off a few weeks ago and ultimately that is up to them.

“It’s easy for people to say that but we have always sent out a consistent message and a real belief.

“Although we had not been playing badly, we had been on a terrible run. A lot of it was self-inflicted, some of it not.

“The draw against Hearts was pleasing, although it would have been brilliant to get the three points. As it is, it brings us another point closer to the pack in front of us.

“We need to keep picking up the points and trying to get that unbeaten run and looking to win the games we think we’re capable of winning.

“The best thing is our fate has always been in our own hands, and that’s still the same. We’ve got to make sure that whatever happens elsewhere, we’re playing our part. We’ve got to look to be at our best in each and every game.

“We’ve taken the four points which has closed the gap. Knowing we performed well against Dundee and particularly in the second half against a really good Hearts team, there’s a lot of positivity to take moving into the games to come.”

Coyle takes particular encouragement from the resilience his side showed against the Jambos, bouncing back from Kyle Lafferty’s outstanding strike to claim a point, and felt aggrieved not to have won the game after seeing the replay of Ryan Dow’s late strike which looked to have crossed the line, but had already been flagged up for offside against Alex Schalk.

He added: “The great thing was the character we showed after going behind. We picked ourselves up and created some really good chances.”

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