Inverness CT: John Robertson issues warning to players after loss to Falkirk

Inverness CT's Iain Vigurs and Alex Cooper
Inverness CT's Iain Vigurs and Alex Cooper look dejected at full-time

Inverness Caledonian Thistle manager John Robertson has demanded "much, much more" from his players after their 2-0 home loss to Falkirk in the League Cup.

The Highlanders were outfought in the first half by their fellow Championship team, who moved above them in Group A.

"There are some players at this club who are still feeling sorry for last season, they had better get over it," said Robertson.

"Liam Polworth is a perfect example; Jake Mulraney is the same."

Robertson replaced Richie Foran in the summer following Caley Thistle's relegation from the Premiership.

The former Hearts striker pointed to the Bairns, who lost out on promotion in the play-offs, as an example to his own players.

"Falkirk showed where we have to get to," he told BBC Scotland after goals by Joe McKee and Nathan Austin won the match for Peter Houston's team.

"They worked for each other and they were brave on the ball. They did to us what we were attempting to do to them.

"The one thing that hugely disappointed me in the first half was the lack of desire, the lack of passion; you've got to get the basics right."

Robertson highlighted the effort made by midfielder McKee to get into the box to receive a cut-back by Alex Harris as evidence of the "passion and desire" lacking in his own team.

"We need much, much more from everyone," he added.

Myles Hippolyte congratulates Nathan Austin on his goal
Myles Hippolyte congratulates Austin on his goal

"I would suggest, apart from Collin Seedorf, they won every individual battle on the pitch in the first half. The second half was a different story.

"We've only got 14 players, and four injuries - Aaron Doran, Carl Tremarco long term, Zak Elbouzedi and Gary Warren short term. Bring those four into the squad and you have competition for places.

"I think too many players know they are going to be selected week in, week out because of the lack of bodies."

Houston was delighted with Falkirk's win, which he believes his players "managed fairly comfortably".

"We look as if we have a bit more pace in the front line [this season]," he said.

"John Baird was a brilliant player for us, and Lee Miller, coming on for us today, we couldn't get beyond teams.

"This time, with Nathan Austin, Rory Loy, Myles Hippolyte and Alex Harris, like a front four, we can get in behind teams as well as take it short.

"We are a threat with more pace in the team and I think that is what we hope will serve us well in the division this year.

"We are at home to Forfar on Tuesday night. If we win that it would take a lot for anybody else to get in front of us."