“You can’t just play for 45 minutes” is the brutal assessment of Dundee striker Marcus Haber ahead of a crunch clash with Hamilton today.
A poor start to their midweek game against Motherwell cost the Dark Blues more points as the Steelmen ran out 1-0 winners thanks to Craig Tanner’s fifth-minute strike.
Striker Haber, making his comeback after two months out with a thigh injury, felt the second half was much better from Dundee but the damage had already been done.
And, for him, that means performing for 90 minutes this weekend.
“We want to regroup and put a better performance together overall,” Haber said.
“You can’t just play for 45 minutes. We’ve got to be consistent and have a little more cutting edge in the final third.
“We obviously need to pick up points against the teams in and around us so it’s a good opportunity for us to put it right.
“You’ve got to look at the performances.
“In the Partick match, we shot ourselves in the foot a bit.
“Obviously you want to take away points but the positive thing was we played quite well throughout the game but a couple of lapses in concentration costs you at this level.
“We’ve got to take positives from games and build on the second-half performance on Wednesday.”
The defeat leaves Dundee just a point above the bottom of the Premiership as they welcome a Hamilton side on the same points as them.
First thing for the Dark Blues is not giving away such a “cheap goal” early on.
“We’re disappointed not to have taken any points on Wednesday,” said Haber.
“It’s always difficult when you go down early in a match.
“In the second half we performed better, passed the ball a bit better and created a bit more but we’re disappointed.
“When you go down a goal early it’s always a bit deflating and you’ve got to regroup and get yourself back in the game. It was difficult.
“It was a cheap goal to give away but that’s football sometimes.
“We were a little bit better in the second half but it wasn’t our day.”
Haber played the full 90 minutes the last time the Dark Blues took on Hamilton — a 3-0 defeat at SuperSeal Stadium.
And today would be a perfect time to make up for that disappointing day by pushing the Dark Blues clear of the bottom sides.
“You know what you’re going to get from Hamilton, they’re a physical squad, they work hard and do the dirty things very well, the hard parts of the game,” added Haber.
“It’s going to be one of those games where you have to be up for it physically and mentally and make it hard for them to play just like they do.
“We’ll be up for the challenge.
“Whichever team we’re against, we have a way of playing that we feel can be effective.
“We’re focused on ourselves. Wednesday just wasn’t our night but we’ve got a confident group of boys and everyone will regroup, get our heads up and it’ll be OK.”
Haber, meanwhile, was just happy to be back out on the pitch after two frustrating months sitting out with a tear in his thigh picked up at Aberdeen.
“I feel fine,” he said. “Every player feels frustrated sitting on the sidelines with an injury.
“It’s difficult but I’m back now and just want to contribute and work hard for the team.”