Ross County: Jim McIntyre likes 'exciting' play-offs

By Martin DowdenBBC Scotland
Ross County have taken 16 points from their last six league matches
In-form Ross County have taken 16 points from their last six league matches

Ross County manager Jim McIntyre insists he is a big fan of the Premiership play-offs, despite battling to avoid being involved in them.

County's run of five wins in six games has taken them three points clear of Motherwell in 11th place.

The team finishing second last will face a Championship side over two legs, following play-offs involving second, third and fourth in the second tier.

"It's a fantastic addition which has been long overdue, said McIntyre.

"I was involved in play-offs in England as a player.

"It's an exciting time, especially in the Championship. It gives teams a real aim toward the end of the season. It's not meaningless games; you can still get into that fourth spot.

"Obviously, we're up a league and we're fighting to stay out of it which is the other side of the play-off mind-set, but it's the same in a way as you've still got to win games to make sure you stay clear of it.

"We've got to make sure we finish in 10th or above. That's the aim. Likewise, Motherwell and St Mirren will be saying the same.

"Let's not forget that we were that team four or five weeks ago who were six points behind the other two.

"A couple of results can change things dramatically and changes the picture of the league."

County have secured 16 points in their last six games, having amassed just 12 all season prior to that.

McIntyre is reluctant to reveal targets but did concede a points tally he believes would see them remain in the top flight.

"As many as possible is the greedy answer," he told BBC Scotland. "Sitting on 28 points, I think 14 more would be very close to securing our Premiership status.

"You look at a certain batch of games and think how many points can we pick out of that but it doesn't always work like that.

"We're miles away from it. We've got so much work still to do. We've got to concentrate on the team that's in front of us."

Ross County lost 2-1 on their last visit to Tannadice
Ross County lost 2-1 on their last visit to Tannadice in August

Ross County face Dundee United at Tannadice on Saturday, while Motherwell visit Kilmarnock and bottom club St Mirren host leaders Celtic the previous evening.

"Going to Tannadice, you have to be at your best to get a result," added McIntyre.

"In the last couple of seasons they've been fantastic, doing really well in cup competitions and also the league.

"They've got a number of players with real quality who can really hurt you.

"If we keep doing what we're doing, playing with the intensity that we're playing at and also the quality that we've shown when we've got into goal scoring positions and wider areas, then of course we can keep the run going.

"Any game is different with opposition systems. You do your homework on the opposition and come up with a game plan to try and win the match."

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