James McPake admits he would have been fuming if his players had overdone the celebrations following their emphatic victory against Raith Rovers in midweek.
The Dark Blues beat the Kirkcaldy side 3-0 at Stark’s Park in the first leg of the Premiership play-off semi-final.
However, there was a muted response from the Dundee players as the final whistle sounded.
That low-key reaction pleased McPake, who insists there is still everything to play for in the second leg at Dens tonight, despite his side’s healthy lead.
The 36-year-old said: “The players know it is not (over) If any of them had been celebrating on Wednesday then I would have been going off my nut and I genuinely mean that.
“Raith are a good side, John McGlynn is a very good manager and he sets them up very well.
“We’ve had tough games against them this season, Wednesday included, and there is no room for complacency at all.
“It is nowhere near finished and we need to be at it. We will be at it and they will come at us. It is their cup final, they need to come, have a go and try to get themselves back into the tie.”
Raith have won plaudits all season for their silky passing style but McPake admits he is prepared for every eventuality tonight – including a battle.
The former defender added: “Our ultimate goal is to get to the Premiership but first and foremost we need to take care of Raith.
“They might come and roll the sleeves up and turn it into a fight or they might do what they have done every game this season – play the attractive football that I love watching as long as it is not against our team as it can hurt you.
“But all we can take care of is Dundee and we know if we win the game, we are in the final.”
Strongest squad of McPake’s reign
While McPake is unsure what game plan Raith will adopt, one thing he is certain of is that the current group of players at Dens is the best since he became boss.
He added: “As a manager, this is my strongest squad by a mile.
“The strength and depth I have is great, the match winners and experience we have which is mixed with the Max Andersons and Fin Robertsons.
“I think you see that in this unbeaten run where there have been different shapes, formation and personnel.
“Charlie Adam has been sitting on the bench at times with Shaun Byrne sitting next to him with a midfield of Paul McGowan and Max Anderson.
“You can throw in Jordan McGhee, Jason Cummings, Danny Mullen, Jordan Marshall, Osman Sow and I am missing boys out.
“Jordan and Alex Jakubiak are back and Adam Legzdins has come in and what an impact he has made.
“It is the strongest squad by a mile since I have been in charge.”
Centre-half Liam Fontaine had to come off in the second half of the Raith game on Wednesday but McPake revealed he will be fit for tonight’s match.
McPake said: “We got Liam off just in time which is a relief because he is a big player for us.and he will be fine.”