Dundee striker Danny Mullen hopes his supersub appearance at Morton has done enough to earn him a start against Inverness on Tuesday night.
The frontman came off the bench for the last half-hour at Cappielow, set up a goal for Jason Cummings, hit the post and then scored an 80th-minute equaliser to earn a point for his side.
However, he wasn’t able to jolt the Dark Blues out of their winless run as the 2-2 draw in Greenock made it four Championship matches without victory.
Going into the re-arranged clash with Caley Thistle this week, Dundee won’t have won a league match in two months.
Much of that time has been spent without games being played due to bad weather.
Mullen, though, knows wins have to start coming sooner rather than later for the Dark Blues.
“Starting on Tuesday we need to get a win and build a bit of momentum again and go on an unbeaten run, like we did earlier in the season for a number of weeks,” he said.
“In this league you need to pick up momentum and go on a run.
“We’ll need everybody in the team, we’ll all need to be ready for the weeks coming up as we have a busy schedule.
“Having the games coming up thick and fast is good, especially if you are getting wins.
“You’d rather have the points on the board but we’re looking forward to these games coming up, so we can build momentum.”
Point to prove
Mullen came into the game looking like he had a point to prove, having dropped to the bench following the arrival of former Hibs and Rangers man Jason Cummings.
And he hopes he made it to boss James McPake after netting his fifth goal of the campaign.
Mullen said: “Obviously nobody wants to be on the bench but I found myself on the bench again this week.
“However, every time I go on pitch I just try to give the manager a bit of a headache for the next game coming up and hopefully I have done that.
“It was good to get on, make an impact in the game and get a point, especially after being behind.
“I’m delighted with the impact I made.
“Deccy (McDaid) and Maxy (Anderson) came on as well and both of them were excellent.
“It was the right subs, at the right time in the game from the manager and it eventually got us back in the game.
“They played a part in getting us the point.”
How the game went
On a bumpy pitch and facing a barrage of long, high balls Dundee’s backline had to be on its toes for the majority of the opening period.
Having creaked and leaked often this campaign, it was credit to the Dark Blues defence that they repelled everything a confident Ton side threw at them early on.
In particular Lee Ashcroft put in a much-improved showing at centre-back than he did the previous week against Queen of the South.
However, just when it seemed they had weathered the storm, got hold of the ball and started creating chances of their own – Ashcroft had a header cleared off the line, Osman Sow nodded over and Cummings let a decent chance slip – they were behind.
The first-half had been anything but pretty. However, the opening goal was a strike of fierce beauty.
Nodded inside by Lewis Strapp, Craig McGuffie gave Jack Hamilton no chance with a first-time volley that saw the ball fly into the far corner.
In the second half, Dundee were better but it took the change of Mullen for Sow to turn the flow of the game.
Suddenly the Dark Blues were making in-roads and a flicked Mullen header saw Cummings take full advantage of that, holding off his man to fire below the on-rushing goalkeeper on 65 minutes.
The majority of the play was in the Morton half but they caught Dundee on the break just five minutes later to re-take the lead.
Paul McGowan wanted a foul in midfield as Ton stole possession and flew up-field with McGuffie crossing for Luca Colville to send a header bouncing into the top corner.
Dundee’s leaky defence had coughed up another two goals but the frontline continued to pour forward and eventually its quality told.
First Mullen had seen a close-range effort crack the top of the post with fellow sub Anderson’s rebound headed off the line before Morton were caught sleeping from a wide free-kick.
Declan McDaid and McMullan worked a crossing position for the on-loan Dundee United winger to send in the centre with Mullen in the right place to nod beyond Aidan McAdams.
The goalscorer described it: “For the goal, Paul got wide and since he’s come in I knew he would hang it up, so I made my move and it worked out well for us.
“We work on it in training and you know where he’s going to put in and, hopefully, more come off than not.
“Paul’s made an impact since coming in. The gaffer saw he had a chance to get him and he’s got quality, that’s been shown by the assists he’s made.
“With the pace he’s got he can cause any defence in this league problems and the league above if we get there.”
‘We look to go and win’
Next up is that rearranged clash with Inverness with victory putting Dundee back into the top four.
Lose and Neil McCann’s Caley Thistle will leapfrog his old side.
Mullen knows just how important Tuesday night could be.
He added: “We’ll now look to Tuesday, Saturday’s game is behind us now, and we’ll look to go and win it.
“Every game we go into we look to try to win it but it doesn’t always turn out like that.
“Our focus and preparation for Inverness on Tuesday has started for us to go and win it.”