Neil McCann insists his Dundee side will be fresh for split fixtures

Neil McCann

Dundee’s players will be fit for the split with boss Neil McCann hard at work preparing them for the Tayside derby next week.

The Dark Blues kick off their final five games of the season against St Johnstone at Dens Park next Saturday (see below for full fixture round-up).

And Neil says belief is still high with the players despite being on the wrong end of a 4-0 scoreline last time out against Rangers.

He spotted a few tactical issues to fix in that game, though he admits tiredness was a factor.

The Dens gaffer said: “Belief will still be high, maybe not straight after the Rangers game.

“I tried to pick them up but they’ll get plenty of days off now to recover so they are fresh in mind and body going into the last five games.

“I told them not to be too hard on themselves. Clearly there are things there like the second goal for instance where our midfield shifted too far over.”

With Kenny Miller having already opened the scoring in the first half, the Gers took full control of the contest with Daniel Candeias finding space down the Dundee left before setting up Alfredo Morelos for the finish.

“Rangers were trying to develop down the sides with Tavernier and with a five in midfield you are always vulnerable to a four because they get an overload,” Neil added.

“You try to combat that by spreading the midfield which we did well against Celtic.

“You can see by the pictures, our three midfielders are choked over that side which creates the overload.

“There are things tactically but again I think tiredness plays its part.

“I felt we made enough chances to get ourselves back to level terms.

“We didn’t and suffered what looks a heavy defeat but I’m not sure it was a four-nothing game.”

Despite the tiredness shown by his players, Neil insists he saw plenty in the performance to be positive about going into the final five games.

“I thought until Rangers got their second goal we were really competitive.

“We created chances, thought there were wee glimpses of how we want to play, tight triangles and things, but clearly when we lost the second goal it had an effect on us greatly in terms of mindset.

“That’s when the tiredness really kicks in, the mind takes over and tells the body it’s tired.

“I have no complaints about our boys.”

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