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Ross County deal with setbacks better compared to last season, says Blair Spittal

By Andrew Henderson

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Blair Spittal believes there is clear evidence of the progress Ross County have made over the last year.

Picture - Ken Macpherson, Inverness. Ross County(1) Celtic(2). 15.12.21. A shattered Ross County's Blair Spittal at the end.
Picture - Ken Macpherson, Inverness. Ross County(1) Celtic(2). 15.12.21. A shattered Ross County's Blair Spittal at the end.

It was exactly one year ago today that the midfielder returned to the fold in Dingwall, having spent the first part of last season out in the cold and on loan at Partick Thistle.

Since then it has been quite a turnaround, as Spittal played an important role in keeping County in the top flight last season before becoming a team leader under Malky Mackay.

With a very different group of players at the club now too, the 26-year-old feels the team’s development has been clear to see.

“Everyone saw a chance for a fresh start under the new manager,” he said.

“A lot of players left and a lot of players came in, so it was always going to take time, but I think everyone has gelled together as quickly as we possibly could.

“It was always going to be hard, but we’re starting to see the results that our performances deserve.

“Even in the likes of the game last week against Motherwell, we went down to 10 men. We would probably have struggled to deal with that adversity last year.

“We would probably have – not crumbled, but conceded a second goal that would have killed us.

“As a group, we dug deep together and got the result, which you’ve got to do sometimes.

“You can’t always play well, it was a different type of win, but it’s those important wins that are going to help us by the end of the season.”

Spittal’s own personal progress has been signified by the number of times he has worn the captain’s armband this season.

He often led the team out in the early part of the season before Jack Baldwin claimed it, but in the absence of Baldwin and Keith Watson through injury Spittal had it again last weekend.

It is not something that affects him too much, though, as he says there are leaders all over the pitch at County.

“We understand that we’ve got a few leaders in the squad,” Spittal reasoned.

“We’ve got a couple of good boys that are going to take control of things on the park, which is what we need.

“The manager stresses that as well – it’s not just about one player who’s the captain. It’s about everybody taking responsibility on the park. It’s important that when we do have boys out that other players step up and take that leadership on board.”

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