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Iain Vigurs confident he can avoid relegation repeat with Ross County

Iain Vigurs.
Iain Vigurs.

Iain Vigurs has experienced the pain of relegation twice before with Caley Thistle but feels he is better equipped for Premiership survival with Ross County this season.

Vigurs first suffered demotion with Inverness as a 21-year-old in 2009, before once again going down during his second spell at the club eight years later.

Iain Vigurs is comforted by a fan following Inverness’ relegation in 2017.

Having since made the move to County, where he is also in his second spell, midfielder Vigurs is eager to prevent the Staggies suffering a similar fate.

The Dingwall side go into tonight’s crucial match away to Hamilton Accies with only a point separating them from their bottom placed opponents, who have two games in hand over the Staggies.

Skipper Vigurs is confident the current County squad has a better chance of avoiding the drop compared to his most recent experience with their Highland rivals in 2017.

Vigurs said: “I had two relegations with Inverness. The last one was their latest relegation and it was a tough season. No one wants to get relegated, and they are still trying to bounce back now. There is no guarantee you will come straight back up.

“It was hard for me personally and for the club. You don’t want to be in a relegation fight but that’s what we are in.

“It is night and day here compared to that season with Caley Thistle. I believe that we will get out of this.

“At Inverness, no one was too sure, but here if you ask anyone in the squad they will say that we are more than capable and we are going to get out of the dogfight.”

A significant factor in Vigurs’ confidence the Staggies can avoid relegation is the presence of manager John Hughes, who took over from Stuart Kettlewell in December.

John Hughes.

Vigurs worked under Hughes during his time at Caley Thistle, and he feels his infectious nature can keep the Staggies’ squad upbeat in adversity, such as last Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to Motherwell.

The 32-year-old added: “He can pick up anyone – there’s never a case of him struggling to lift people.

“The boys are always ready to go. It was a poor result against Motherwell and did hurt a lot of the boys, but we can still pick ourselves up and he can still pick us up.

“The minute he comes into a training session or into the room after a defeat like Wednesday he can just pick everyone up by saying something stupid.

“He’s an infectious personality around training. It is just the way he is.

“It is always good to have that trait as a person, let alone a manager, in this line of work.”

County face Accies for the first time since December 19, when the Lanarkshire side’s 2-0 victory resulted in the sacking of previous boss Kettlewell.

The consequences of that result still remain fresh for Aberdeen-born Vigurs, who previously played alongside Kettlewell during his first stint with the Staggies.

Stuart Kettlewell.

Vigurs added: “That was one of the low points of my career.

“To get beaten in the way we did was really poor. We had a lot of the ball and didn’t do anything with it.

“Hamilton played the game really well, defended well and scored at an important time.

“They fought for everything that day and that was what probably disappointed me and the team the most – we were out-fought.

“What happened after was just all on us. As players, we let him down.

“We need to rectify that and not let it happen again on the pitch this time.

“We need to really start picking up points now.

“If players don’t thrive on pressure they’re in the wrong job. The boys should be buzzing off that.”

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