Dundee United boss Csaba Laszlo was disappointed by his team’s latest Betfred Cup disappointment at the weekend.
But he’s reminded fans that it’s all about being ready to win matches when the Championship season kicks off against Dunfermline next week.
For the third group stage tie in a row, Saturday saw the Tangerines fail to record a victory as they were held to a draw by Alloa over 90 minutes and then lost the bonus point penalty shootout.
It means they have no chance of progressing to the knockout stages and Csaba admitted he was angered by aspects of the performance, particularly during a second half that saw United let the lead slip late on.
He isn’t, though, losing sight of the bigger picture.
“Again, like the last game, until 80 minutes we are even in front in the game and then make a stupid mistake,” he said.
“In the first half I think generally the team played some good football but the second half, according to me, this was not what I want to see. Definitely not.
“I think this was to do with the changes we had to make and because we didn’t keep the ball in the front and be more simple.
“Nicky Clark was tired and James Keatings has just come back from an injury so he got tired. After that our attacking game was not there.
“But I want a team who is ready for Dunfermline, that is ready for the league. We have the two weeks and we go now for the next level.”
And Csaba was quick to point out United have not been the only team to have problems in these early season fixtures.
“I have watched the results and every big team is struggling. You are not there where you want to be at the moment. This is not an excuse but it is true. If you train every week two times daily you see that legs are tired. Still, with these tired legs you have to win the game one zero, or two zero and finish.”
United now head for Elgin City on Saturday knowing they have no chance of qualifying.
It will, however, be another vital game as the manager tries to knock his new-look side into shape in their last outing before the league business starts.
United’s ‘Meet the fans day’ takes place at Tannadice on Sunday when supporters will get the chance to see the team train.