Taking a step back to move forward is a concept Dundee’s Declan Gallagher is more than familiar with.
So, relegation from Scotland’s top flight down to the First Division with the Dark Blues is something he’s taking in his stride.
Probably, because he’s had to bounce back before.
Released by Celtic as a youth player, the 21-year-old was forced to take stock, eventually signing his first deal with Third Division Clyde.
That blow, so early in his career, was a character-building experience, according to the defender.
Football is littered with stories of those, set for the big time but, on their release from the Old Firm, sink without a trace.
Gallagher, who was a top-flight revelation in his first season at Dens Park, has proved the route to the top doesn’t have to be conventional.
Signed by previous boss Barry Smith, prior to the club being bumped up at Rangers’ expense, SPL football came as an unexpected surprise.
Hence the prospect of playing second-tier football doesn’t faze him.
“Sometimes you have to go back to go forward,” said Gallagher, who made 28 appearances in his Dark Blues debut season.
“I know from my time at Celtic in life that can sometimes be the case I was let go, and went to the lower divisions.
“But, eventually, I got myself back up it shows you can make it happen if you work hard.”
He added: “It’s been brilliant to get SPL football under my belt.
“When I signed here I thought I was going to be a First Division player, not playing in the top flight.
“This season has worked out to be a very welcome surprise for me.
“The experience I’ve gained has been brilliant.”
Speaking from experience, Gallagher, who signed a three-year deal last summer, admits life was tough in the lower reaches of Scottish football.
He said: “People think the Third Division is an easy place to play I think Rangers have shown it’s not.
“But coming to the SPL has been a step up in class, obviously. It’s a hard league.
“The jump is even massive from First Division level, as we proved when we played Livingston and Morton in the cup.
The difference in standard is a positive for us because we’ll have a massive chance at coming back up if we keep our form going and the players here in the squad.”
Gallagher admits it’s been a real learning experience in the SPL this season, suggesting playing with, and against, a better standard of player has done his own game the world of good.
“I’ve learned a lot from Matty Lockwood him and the other experienced players have been a big help in this league,” said Gallagher.
“It’s a big step up, so to have someone of that ability and experience alongside you is a big help.
“He’s always talking and telling me what to do. That makes my game easier.
“I would be sad to see anyone go. You want to keep them together because we are a good bunch of boys.
“But some people will be off to do better things.”
That’s what he hopes of himself and Dundee, too, this season.
A positive Gallagher added: “We want to bounce back at the first time of asking.
“We’ve all had a taste of the top flight, so it is tough having to give it up.
“All of us are looking at coming straight back up that’s our goal.”