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Returning David Cancola relishes Ross County’s European charge

David Cancola in action for Ross County.
David Cancola in action for Ross County.

David Cancola insists there is no better time to return to the Ross County fold as the Staggies hunt down a European place.

Austrian midfielder Cancola made his first start since January, in last Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Hearts at Tynecastle.

His three recent substitute appearances followed a groin injury, which kept him sidelined for several weeks.

Cancola is now aiming to help County clinch a place in the Europa Conference League in the final three matches of the season.

The Staggies have the opportunity to move four points clear in fifth place – which would secure European football – when they host Motherwell today.

Cancola insists he is relishing the high stakes, and he said: “It’s a great situation to come back into.

“You can feel it at the club, there’s a buzz and it’s a really positive atmosphere.

“That’s all I can wish for, it’s even better to come back in an atmosphere like this.

David Cancola in action against Hearts.

“Honestly, throughout my career these moments have always been when I play my best, and what I enjoy the most.

“That’s what we all train for our whole lives, that’s what we prepare each other for.

“It’s nice when you’re in those moments to really enjoy them, and that’s when you play your best.”

Staggies will take same focus into crucial Well encounter

Motherwell make the trip to Dingwall with the aim of securing a victory, which would see them leapfrog Malky Mackay’s men.

Despite the two sides being closely matched in the league table, Cancola insists the Staggies will not treat the game any differently.

He added: “We can say as much as we want that we’re not looking at the league standings, but we obviously have it in the back of our heads.

“It would be a massive three points, but I think what has made us strong all season is that we have gone for it in every game.

“We will go for it again this season just like any other game, and if we get three points that’s massive.

“The confidence helps, but also we’re humble enough to remember where we came from.

“We know that every game in this league is going to be hard for us, but we’re just going to put it all out there and see what happens.”

Mackay has made midfielder’s Dingwall switch a ‘good fit’

Cancola arrived at Victoria Park last summer, after making the switch from Czech Republic outfit Slovan Liberec.

The 25-year-old says a clarity of instruction from manager Mackay has helped to make his transition to Scottish football a seamless one, in spite of his injury setback.

Malky Mackay.

Cancola added: “I think it was quite a good fit from the start, which is super important.

“We all know how massive it is as a player and a coach to think alike. That can really influence your season.

“I really enjoy the way he wants to play, and I think he does a really good job in giving us a guideline to how he wants to play but still giving us enough freedom to bring in our personal qualities.

“I have really enjoyed playing here all season.

“We have always stuck to our plan. You can tell from the start that there’s a handwriting behind the way we play, and that’s the manager’s doing so he deserves credit for that.

“We’ve stuck to it through tough times, and it’s paying off now. I think that’s a big part of why we’re having a successful season.”

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