Dundee United left-back Jamie Robson believes they have to be more ruthless in front of goal as they continue to find their Premiership feet.
The Tangerines head to Fir Park today to face Motherwell on the back of an opening-day 1-1 draw with 10-man St Johnstone at Tannadice last weekend.
It wasn’t the worst of starts for Robson and Co in the top flight and they did find the target thanks to Nicky Clark’s early penalty.
However, it would have been much better had they made the most of their one-man advantage and capitalised on the chances they created.
Robson, the club’s longest-serving player at the still tender age of 22, admits they need to take opportunities when they come along now that they are in the big league.
He said: “We had four or five chances in the first half where we probably should have scored.
“We also had opportunities later in the game that didn’t go in our favour.
“We cut them open but couldn’t get the goal at the end of it.
“So we do need to be a bit more ruthless, both with the finishing and maybe the final pass.
“There were still so many positives to take from the game, though.
“We got into good positions and were getting shots in but it was just the final product that could have been slightly better,” added Robson, who was arguably his team’s star player against Saints.
“Of course, it is a learning curve.
“It is a lot different to what we have been playing in recent years.
“It is a step-up and we must find our bearings.
“I do think, however, that we did really well for it being our first game in the Premiership.
“Everyone worked so hard and we did create so many chances.
“We showed we are capable of holding our own in this league, even though there is a long way to go.”
Robson feels newly-promoted United will have a good idea of what is required of them this season after they have faced both Saints and the Steelmen.
He added: “They are clubs who usually finish in the top six – there or thereabouts.
“Both have been well established in the Premiership over the years.
“Hopefully, we can go to Motherwell and put on another good performance and get three points.
“Then, moving forward, we will see how we are going to do in games and how it is going to go for us in this league.”
While accepting the challenges posed by top-flight football, Robson is absolutely loving being back after four frustrating years in the Championship.
He said: “It was really tough at times.
“There have been a few occasions when we have not been good enough in crucial games.
“Especially in those play-offs, we got close but it just wasn’t to be our day.
“To go through all that and to be here now in the Premiership is an amazing feeling.
“I am so happy to be here and hopefully we can prove to everyone that we are a Premier side and stay here.
“Those four years have been tough for me and for the club.
“Now I want to show everyone that I can play at this level, that I am a Premiership player. I will do my best to make that happen.
“Hopefully, both myself and United can have a fantastic season.
“To be here now is a brilliant feeling.”
While Robson has those years etched on his memory, the likes of new signings Ryan Edwards and Luke Bolton do not.
However, the defender insists there is no one at Tannadice unaware of just how much being back in the big time means to the club.
He said: “I think the lads coming into the club all know how tough it’s been.
“They all know how big United is and that it’s a massive club in Scotland.
“They know the name and I’m pretty sure they know what has happened in the past.
“They are aware we have just come up from the Championship and are determined to do well.
“It is going to be tough but they are all coming here ready to work hard and do the right things for the team on the pitch and the fans off the pitch.”
Robson has been delighted to welcome both wide player Bolton and former Blackpool central defender Edwards, who could make his United debut this afternoon.
He said: “They have both been really good in training and are great lads.
“I just met Ryan at the start of the week.
“He is a big centre-half and hopefully he will bring a lot of positives to the team if he gets his chance.
“Luke has also done well.
“They have both come here with experience which will help us a lot in the Premiership.”