One of the most important factors in Dundee United’s build up to the new Championship season has been the need to ensure memories of the horrific end to last term have been extinguished.
And boss Robbie Neilson believes that’s one box he’s been able to tick over the past month or so.
United’s hopes of being back in the Premiership this term were dashed by a penalty shootout defeat in the play-off final at St Mirren that saw them fail to convert a single kick.
Disappointing as that was, since day one of pre-season Robbie believes there has been no sign of any lingering hangover. And the fact he feels there are exciting times ahead at Tannadice on and off the park has helped.
“I think for everyone it’s just gone. Once you get to the next day it’s done and dusted and there is nothing you can do, there’s no looking back,” he said.
“The club is moving forward, the team is moving forward with players coming in and players moving out as well.
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“We’ve got the young ones coming in and they bring that energy so that’s put to bed, it’s done and it’s a case of moving on.”
Yesterday saw confirmation that surplus-to-requirements winger Yannick Loemba has now left Tannadice and a deal to secure the signing of former Motherwell wide man Elliot Frear looks close.
The Belgian managed just 10 appearances after signing up for Csaba Laszlo last year, with only one of them coming after Robbie’s appointment as team boss back in early October.
Winger Fraser Aird, who spent the second half of last season out on loan at Queen of the South, could also be on his way soon.
And Robbie believes it’s important there is room for the younger talent, some of whom have impressed in pre-season, to come into the reckoning for places.
“We have some good quality players here. Scott Banks has done well, Louis Appere, Logan Chalmers and Declan Glass has gone away out on loan and is doing really well at Cove so we’ll see how he does and look to probably bring him back in the January window.
“It’s just managing this group. These are good players and we’ve got some younger ones below that as well.
“You just can’t chuck them in full steam. They need to come in and out as is necessary and that’s the reason we have senior players in the squad that can help them so they can come in and out as need be and they can support them through it.
“Though it’s important if players are getting 10 or 15 minutes games time, it’s younger ones so we can continue to develop them.”
Former United youth coach Craig Easton has been confirmed as Gary Bollan’s permanent assistant at League Two Cowdenbeath.