Robbie Neilson remained calm after Dundee United’s shock Betfred Cup defeat at the hands of East Fife.
And the Tangerines’ gaffer even accepted some of the blame for the 2-0 Tannadice reversal because he’s been working his squad hard in training to make sure they are ready for next week’s Championship opener with Inverness Caley Thistle.
But he’s also made clear to his players, who were locked in the dressing-room for the best part of 45 minutes after the final whistle, the performance on Tuesday night was not acceptable.
“We are not going to win every game this season but we have to realise the level shown against East Fife was not good enough,” he said.
“We have to accept defeat sometimes and I couldn’t fault the players for their workrate. However, it was that bit of quality when you need it that was lacking and they know that.”
The process of making sure as many of his men as possible are up to speed for next week, continues today as United face English League One outfit Shrewsbury Town down in Shropshire.
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“It’s about getting players fit down here. We will make some changes from Tuesday to make sure we get everyone as close as we can to where they need to be for the first game of the season.
“I like the Betfred Cup but you can only make the three subs and that is an issue.
“Some of the boys have played Friday, Tuesday, Friday, Tuesday and are fine and there are boys who have not played as much as we would like. That makes Shrewsbury important because it’s a chance for those ones to get ready by getting another 90 minutes under their belt.”
Among those set to start today are recent signing Adam King, keeper Deniz Mehmet and midfielder Ian Harkes.