Malky Mackay confident Ross County players will be up for survival fight

Malky MacKay is confident his side are up for a fight (PA)
PA Sport Staff

Ross County manager Malky Mackay admits he is confident his team will not shy away from the fight to move clear of cinch Premiership relegation trouble.

The Staggies dropped back into the bottom two on Saturday following a 2-1 setback at Livingston.

The away team were left with an uphill struggle when Joel Nouble and Nicky Devlin scored in quick succession before the break.

Substitute Simon Murray pulled one back for County but Mackay’s team could not dig out an equaliser.

The Highland side are now only two points clear of basement team Dundee United, and a point adrift of safety with nine games left.

But the experienced former Cardiff and Watford boss is adamant that his players will be up for the battle.

He said: “Results come with performances, and we’ve got to make sure we keep working hard and being in games.

“We were in the game all day, but we’ve just got to take our chances when we get them.

“The good thing about this group is that it doesn’t look like a team that are done for in this division. They are at it every week, and they’re fighting right until the end.

“I think there would have been a sigh of relief at the end from Davie Martindale, so we need to make sure we take that into the games that are against teams around about us.”

Livingston manager Davie Martindale, meanwhile, praised Devlin’s performance after the Lions captain led by example against the Staggies.

The defender’s display came just days after Martindale revealed that Devlin is all but set to depart the club this summer.

Martindale said: “I’ve had players at the club I know want to move on.

“There’s a good chance Nicky might not be here but I’d never question his character or application.

“He gives everything he’s got from day one. He will leave a very good right back.

“Whoever gets Nicky will be lucky, I’ll probably put him into a couple of clubs down south if he’s got a chance to go there.

“I’ve got a good relationship with managers. To try and help them out.

“Nicky has kicked on massively and taken the responsibility of captain quite seamlessly.

“Whoever gets him has a good player for nothing.”