Dundee United manager Micky Mellon has urged his team to show a nationwide audience they are a valuable addition to the Premiership.
With tonight’s Tannadice clash against Hibs being the club’s first live Sky broadcast of the season, Mellon is backing his men to impress the TV viewers.
After taking a point against St Johnstone on opening day, the Tangerines travelled to Fir Park on Saturday and deservedly beat Motherwell 1-0 thanks to a strike from unlikely scorer Mark Reynolds.
With the Easter Road men having made a perfect start to their own season with back-back wins, all eyes will be on the 6pm clash.
“I do think it’s a great opportunity to showcase our football club to a wider audience,” said Mellon.
“It also gives our fans an opportunity to see us perform because they haven’t been allowed into the stadiums yet.”
However, Mellon does not agree the cameras will give the players added incentive to play well. He would expect a performance from them under any circumstances.
He said: “If players need extra motivation for this then I would want to know why they didn’t bring that to the party all the time.”
Mellon is expecting the game to be easy on the eye, adding: “We know the United-Hibs games will be terrific encounters.
“Both sides have players who want to play football in the way I like to see it played and it’s just a pity you don’t get crowds in – that will come though.
“We have two teams who have had good results in their two games.”
Mellon and his men have had a quick turnaround from that Well win but he insists they are ready for what he admits is a considerable challenge.
“We have had tight timescale for our preparations but we’ve all done that before so we are not looking for any excuses,” he said.
“We have to get used to that.
“We’ll get them all back refreshed and with energy in the legs.
“We will then look to make a really good impact in a game against a really talented Hibernian team.
“We have quite a confident group and we keep saying to everybody that the players are used to winning because they are champions.
“So it’s not something that is new to them.
“Yeah, we have stepped up a level but on Saturday they hit the intensity and tempo that will be needed in this league.
“We then got better, in terms of the quality of our football, as the Motherwell game went on.
“The challenges we face will be different every time but we will attack those challenges.”
United expect striker Lawrence Shankland to have shaken off the ankle injury that kept him out of the success against the Steelmen, while there is a doubt over right-back Liam Smith, who picked up a knock on Saturday.
Mellon said: “We have the usual bumps and bruises but If I have to make changes then that is just the way football is.
“We have a squad of players and if they are called upon they will be asked to go out and perform for Dundee United.”