Dundee United defender Stewart Murdoch will sport black eye against Inverness Caley Thistle

Dundee United's Stewart Murdoch in action

Dundee United defender Stewart Murdoch will take to the field against Inverness Caley Thistle today sporting a beauty of a black eye.

And the full-back knows with a potential 18 games still to play in the final two months of the season, there will be plenty more bumps and bruises to come.

But so long as the Tangerines keep winning, he’ll happily take them.

“I went up for a header against Queen of the South on Tuesday and took an elbow in the face,” he explained.

“It’s one of those things that happen but you don’t mind when you are winning — as long as we keep doing that you don’t really care.”

Tuesday’s 3-1 success at Palmerston was United’s first league win in over two months and, while the poor run of results since the New Year did not reflect some decent performances, the 27-year-old admits the return to winning ways has given everyone a massive lift.

“We could look back at some of the recent performances and say, at times, we played decent football because we definitely did,” he added.

“Winning matches, though, is what really gives you a lift and, however well you’ve played, a defeat is still a defeat. You would always take playing badly and winning over playing well and losing.

“The good thing about Tuesday night at Queen of the South was as well as getting the win we needed, we did play well.

“Going behind was a setback but we got level quickly and for the rest of the 90 minutes we were on top. I thought we controlled the game very well — going 3-1 up is always a help but we still had to see out the game and we did it comfortably.

“Doing that is always going to be good for confidence and to do it at a difficult place like Queens after losing the first goal felt good.”

Now the focus is very much on ICT and a game Murdoch knows will require another good performance if United are to take the points.

“They are not as high up the league as they would like but they are a strong team and we know that.

“We beat them up there on the opening day of the season and it was a very good game. We were worth our win but I thought they played well.

“And, if you ask them, I think they would probably say when they came down to Tannadice and beat us last time we played — it was their best performance this season.

“Maybe a bit like us they have been too up and down and lack consistency but that’s why we are both where we are just now.

“After winning on Tuesday, we are looking to build a run and get that consistency we need.”

With two games a week for the next month at least, Murdoch knows the opportunity to put together a winning sequence is there and, rather than be daunted by the fixtures coming thick and fast, he’s viewing it as a challenge.

“We’ve had a few games off recently and right now we just want to get back playing regularly.

“Starting with Inverness, we have three home games in a week and right away that’s a chance to pick up some points and see where it takes us.

“What the run we have coming up means is we won’t be doing all that much training and a lot of the time it will be game, recovery and then another game.

“That does mean we have to be careful to do the right things between games but we’ve got a lot of experience in the squad here and we know what we need to do to be ready.”

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