Ross County manager Derek Adams believes Tuesday’s opponents Motherwell embody the determination of his opposite number Stuart Kettlewell.
Kettlewell is no stranger to Adams, who signed him for the Staggies from Clyde in 2009 during his first spell in charge at Victoria Park.
Midfielder Kettlewell was a key part of Adams’ County side which clinched promotion to the top flight for the first time in 2012.
After retiring from playing Kettlewell spent nearly three years in charge of the Dingwall side, initially as co-manager alongside Steven Ferguson, before taking charge at Well earlier this season.
Adams, who recently returned for a third stint as County boss, takes satisfaction from Kettlewell being among a number of his former players to have turned their hand towards management.
He said: “I signed Stuart here many years ago, and he has gone on to manage Ross County and now Motherwell.
“We signed him from Clyde. He came in and helped us get promoted out of the Championship and into the Scottish Premier League.
“He was a player that was very tough and combative in the midfield, he would make tackles.
“He’s the type of player you would require in your side.
“As a manager, you don’t get that sense from players, of becoming future managers, but I think it is always nice to see many of your players go into management.
“You only have to look at Stuart himself, Martin Scott and Steven Craig (Gala Fairydean Rovers), Colin McMenamin (Annan Athletic) and Paul Lawson (Banks O’ Dee) as well.
“Martin Scott you would never, ever have envisaged becoming a manager.
“He came down to see me at Morecambe last season and came and watched a game, against Bolton I think.
“He has changed his personality into a super-intelligent guru of football.
“It is good to see them progressing, not just in their coaching careers, but managerial careers too.”
Adams sees spirit in Kettlewell’s Steelmen
Although Motherwell have not won since September, in a sequence which stretches to 11 matches, the Steelmen have staged a number of late fightbacks to claim spirited draws in recent weeks.
That gives Adams enough warning to expect a difficult encounter when the sides meet at Victoria Park in Tuesday’s Premiership encounter.
He added: “Going into this game against Motherwell, they have come off a 3-3 draw against Dundee in a really exciting game in which they were down to 10 men and got an equaliser.
“You look at the game against Celtic, they kept on going to get a 1-1 draw.
“The last time Ross County played them they came back from 3-1 down to draw 3-3.
“They do keep on going. We have got to be on it on Tuesday night.”
Adams aiming to continue unbeaten start since return
County are unbeaten since Adams replaced Malky Mackay as manager last month, having claimed four points from games against Kilmarnock and St Mirren.
Following the postponement of Saturday’s trip to Livingston due to a frozen pitch, County go into their third successive home fixture knowing a victory would see them leapfrog Well into eighth place.
Adams feels is plenty to build upon, adding: “We’ve got to be resolute and strong as we have been in the last two games, keeping clean sheets, and limiting the opposition to few chances on goal.
“On the flip side, we have to continue with the creativity we have had.
“We’re at home. We’ve got to take the game to Motherwell, and create chances.
“The home supporters have seen in the last two games the openings we have made and three points would put us a long way towards catching the teams above us.
“The players have understood the positions and jobs I’ve asked them to do.
“I’ve only been in two weeks, but it is pleasing to see some of the aspects I’m asking them to do in training coming to fruition on the park.”