Ross County midfielder Ross Draper insists it has taken him less than a week to familiarise himself with his former manager John Hughes.
Former Caley Thistle manager Hughes was appointed the Staggies’ new boss on Monday, replacing Stuart Kettlewell who was sacked following the 2-0 loss to Hamilton Accies last weekend.
Draper played under Hughes for the duration of his two-and-a-half-year stint as manager at Inverness, having been a crucial part of the side which lifted the Scottish Cup in 2015.
The 32-year-old insists he knows exactly what to expect from the new County manager, with former Caley Jags team-mates Carl Tremarco, Iain Vigurs and Billy Mckay also part of the Dingwall squad.
Draper said: “It’s never nice to see someone lose their job and Stuart is a good bloke.
“But the chairman did what he had to. It was a tough decision.
“I have worked the manager before, although I forgot about all his mannerisms.
“The boys have all said to me about ten times, ‘He’s off his head, isn’t he?’
“The manager has come in and made a really good impression and the boys are enjoying it.
“Myself and Carl Tremarco are maybe a couple of weeks ahead of the boys in terms of knowing what he wants, expects and his philosophy. We can maybe help the boys out.
“It’s a different set of eyes and, although it wasn’t nice to see Stuart lose his job, it is a good appointment.
“Now we need to get together as a group and get results.”
Although Draper expects it will take time for Hughes to implement his playing style on his newly-inherited squad, he says the need for results is greater than his early days at Inverness.
The Staggies sit four points adrift at the foot of the Premiership ahead of today’s encounter with St Mirren at Victoria Park, and Draper added: “It’s probably different circumstances to when the manager took over at Inverness during the season.
“We were second or third in the league under Terry Butcher and results weren’t needed.
“I remember before one game he said, ‘I don’t care if you win or lose, I just want to see a performance’.
“It’s different here. It’s about getting points on the board and winning games.
“The manager will be trying to drip feed information into the squad, without overloading things.
“That’s the way he will go about it, but it’s a results business, and we need to get wins.
“It’s two teams who are down there and need the points, but we need to make the most of home advantage.
“St Mirren are a good side and they have turned things around.
“They were ten unbeaten before midweek and that came from nothing really.
“Jim has done a good job there, so we need to take inspiration from what St Mirren have done as we start out with the new manager.
“They are a good side, but we are at home and we need to be positive.”
Draper made his first start since early October in Wednesday’s 2-0 loss to Celtic at Parkhead, having recently returned from a calf injury.
Draper hopes he is past his injury woes, with the 32-year-old adding: “My fitness will come with games. There is no easy way to get it back.
“It was good to be back after a bad injury with the calf. I also had a few niggles, so it was a struggle.
“But that is all behind me now and it’s all hands on deck.
“It seems like we get one player back and then lose two, but we want everyone back for the manager now.”