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Former Rangers and Dundee United man Charlie Telfer hoping to settle quickly at Ross County after Highland welcome from Scotland star Ryan Christie

By Alasdair Fraser

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Charlie Telfer is already feeling at home in the Highlands – after landing a VIP guided tour from a Scotland EURO 24 star.

The former Rangers and Dundee United midfielder is great pals with Bournemouth’s Ryan Christie and was quick to tap into the Inverness hero’s local knowledge after sealing a move to Ross County.

Some warm Highland hospitality from the Scotland attacker at his family home in Inverness was coupled with plenty of lowdown and a whistle stop introduction to the best local attractions.

It was ideal for 29-year-old Telfer, who left Airdrie in the summer to realise his long-held ambition of returning to Scotland’s top-flight for the first time since his Tannadice ambitions fell flat back in 2016.

Charlie Telfer signed a one-year contract with Ross County last week.
Charlie Telfer signed a one-year contract with Ross County last week.

Telfer impressed in his County debut on Saturday as the Staggies squeezed through to a 2-1 victory away to Highland League Brora Rangers.

He said: “Ryan Christie was great with me after I moved north and showed me around the place. I really like it already.

“We’ve known each other since we first went away with Scotland under-21s together. We were away for four or five camps together.

“We became really good friends and we have been good pals ever since.

“I think Ryan has got a few properties up here that he uses. He has always loved it – he's a bit of a home guy.

“I went round for a few home-cooked meals with his mum and dad, so it was nice for them to show me around.

“He was buzzing for me to be up here – albeit it’s maybe with a different Highland team to the one he supports!”

Telfer, after emerging from the Rangers’ academy, made the bold decision to switch allegiance to Dundee United despite being coveted as a hot prospect by then-boss Ally McCoist.

After a fine first season with the Tangerines, he admits he lost his way – and has been trying to battle back to the top league ever since.

After spells with Almere City in the Netherlands, Morton and Falkirk, Telfer thrived in the last two campaigns with the Diamonds.

The Carluke-born playmaker said: “When I moved to Dundee United as a youngster, I really enjoyed it.

“I thought I was ready for it. I did well in the first season, but I was maybe just a bit young and naive at the time.

“In the second season it just didn’t really work out.

“It has taken a wee while! I have dropped down a couple of leagues but now I am back.

“I’m just so excited to be preparing to play different teams and face the challenge that the Premiership presents.”

He credits life at Airdrie under innovative boss Rhys McCabe for bringing the best out of him.

Telfer stressed: “A lot of the time Scottish football gets a bad reputation for being very direct.

“The manager came in at Airdrie and from day one he was very adamant about the way he wanted to play.

“He showed that in League One, and, if anything, we got better the next season in the Championship.

“I have learned a lot and he demanded a lot of me to take the reins. I think that helped as well. I look back on my time there so fondly.

“We achieved a lot of highs in getting promotion, a cup win and getting to the play-offs.

“I have a lot of fond memories there and I wish them all the best, but throughout the summer, I had a few chats with (County manager) Don Cowie. He was really honest.

“As soon as there was a bit of interest it was a no-brainer for me. The opportunity itself was something I couldn’t turn down.

“At my age I just want to play at the highest level and show what I can do.

“I’m excited. I know it’s going to be difficult to get into the team, and I will have to be as good as everyone else, if not better, to take that opportunity.”

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