Malky Mackay admitted his Covid-hit Ross County players were “hanging by a thread” – but is confident they’ll be fighting fit to face Brora Rangers in midweek.
On Friday, the Staggies had to forfeit their second successive Premier Sports Cup game due to the impact of Covid sweeping through the squad.
Sunday’s game against fellow Premiership side Dundee was cancelled following on from their opener against League One Forfar Athletic as the after-effects of the bug continued to hamper their recovery.
Chairman Roy MacGregor confirmed at the weekend the entire squad had been impacted by Covid.
Better signs after a second cup call-off by County
Manager Mackay, who has only had a 5-0 friendly win at Elgin under his belt, explained what it has been like at Victoria Park ahead of their midweek game against Highland League champions Brora.
He said: “We trained the players gradually over the last few days and gave them Sunday off.
“We had a couple who were dipping in and out of training over Thursday and Friday, but everybody trained on Monday morning.
“While I’m still hearing coughing, everybody’s energy levels are getting there again.
“All things being equal, we’ll be fine for Brora.”
The players reported back for duty last Thursday after a 10-day shutdown when a chunk of the squad showed up positive for the virus.
Low tempo showed there way no chance to play Dundee
Mackay admits, despite their best efforts, there was no chance he’d have had a team fit and well enough to take on Dundee.
He explained: “On Thursday last week, I had to halt the session halfway through, given how bad it was.
“They were hanging by a thread at that point, so we stopped it and got food and rest in them.
𝘼𝙧𝙚 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙙𝙮 𝙩𝙤 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙚 𝙝𝙤𝙢𝙚?🏟️
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“To be fair, on Friday we did a little bit more, but still had a couple out of the main session and on Saturday it looked as if things were beginning to come back to normal.
“We were able to get them all through a training session, but they weren’t anywhere near the tempo we would have been needing.
“I was looking at it thinking there was no chance we’d even get through 45 minutes.
“Today, things are beginning to look more like normality.”