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Game time is helping Yan Dhanda hit new heights at Ross County

By Andrew Henderson

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Yan Dhanda feels he is going from strength to strength as he continues to rack up the minutes for Ross County in the Scottish Premiership.

Ross County's Yan Dhanda gets away from St.Mirren's Keanu Baccus.
Ross County's Yan Dhanda gets away from St.Mirren's Keanu Baccus.

The 24-year-old had to be patient for his opportunity in the Staggies’ starting line-up at the start of the season, but has started the last five matches.

His 18 appearances in total during the 2022/23 campaign so far are in stark contrast to his time at Swansea last season, where he played in six matches – and only one after September.

While undoubtedly possessing plenty of ability, then, it was perhaps a longer road to match sharpness for Dhanda than many of his teammates.

Now, he feels he is reaching the point where he can be at the top of his game once again.

“I’m feeling really fit, and feeling very, very confident – probably the most confident I have in a long time,” the ex-West Brom and Liverpool academy player said.

“When I’m on the pitch I know that I’m going to create a chance at some point, so I just tell Jordan (White) to get in the box, I’ll put a delivery in and we’ll get a chance. That has just come from playing games.

“The lads made it so easy for me to settle in.

“I feel like I’m at full fitness now to show what I can do, and because I’ve played so many games back-to-back I feel like I’ll keep improving.”

With Dhanda feeling much sharper, and the County squad in general gelling, they will be hoping for a very different outcome against Rangers tonight compared to their first meeting earlier this season.

In August, the Staggies lost 4–0 at Ibrox, but recent strong performances against Hibernian and Celtic in particular will give them hope.

“Obviously you have to realise when you play against Celtic, Hearts and Rangers that you’re probably not going to have as much of the ball as you would like,” Dhanda reasoned.

“You prepare for that mentally before the game, and we know that when we do have the ball we’ll have to take care of it and make the most of our chances to punish them.

“Earlier this season against Rangers it was difficult, but we went 1–0 up against Celtic and nearly got the win. It shows how far we’ve come, and hopefully we can give Rangers a really tough game.”

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