October should be a pivotal month for Ross County as they try and finally get their Premiership season up and running.
It has been a long, arduous start to the season for County, who lie second-bottom of the table without a win to their name.
There have been some encouraging performances in those eight games but with three draws and five defeats on the board, it has been far from ideal.
The caveats come in two forms: the rebuilt squad and the difficulty of their fixtures.
County’s new arrivals ran into double-figures after a mass clear-out in the summer, which included seasoned pros like Michael Gardyne, Iain Vigurs, Ross Draper and Billy Mckay.
Six loan signings and six permanent transfers have since arrived and it still appears as if manager Malky Mackay is figuring out his best side.
In their first six games they faced Aberdeen, Celtic, Hibernian, Rangers and Hearts, games in which few would have expected County to take the points. Draws against the Dons and Hearts, as well as an opening-day point against St Johnstone, provides their tally to date.
They have since lost back-to-back games against Motherwell and Dundee United and have not looked like getting away from the basement of the division.
The next three weeks sees them advancing into must-win territory. County return from the international break with a home game against St Mirren, with Livingston then coming to Dingwall a week later.
A trip to the only side below them in the table – Dundee – lies in a midweek at the end of October and County really have to be off the mark by the time Halloween comes and goes.
Some early results would have gone a long way to quietening the controversy around Mackay’s appointment. There was significant disquiet among the County support when he was appointed at the end of May and as yet, results have not validated the decision to give him the job.
It may well come. Under Jim McIntyre County started slowly before finding form late in the campaign to steer themselves away from danger.
The difference there was he came in towards the end of the transfer window and largely had to rely on free-agent signings until January. Mackay has had a significant portion of the summer to get his squad in place.
There is undoubted talent in there. Regan Charles-Cook has been an impressive performer so far, Ross Callachan and Blair Spittal are dependable figures while Jack Baldwin and Harry Clarke should be a solid centre-back pairing.
But the time is now for that promise to be turned into results. If the first win or two does not come within the next three games, the fixture list soon brings about the bigger sides in the division once again.
The Staggies need to get motoring otherwise they risk being left in the traps this season.