Unity can be Dundee United’s strength as they chase the Championship title, according to Peter Pawlett.
The former MK Dons, Aberdeen and St Johnstone player admits he has been surprised by the speed in which United’s new-look side has gelled together.
Off the park as well as on it, Pawlett senses a togetherness that can help them get over tricky tests like the one they will face at in-form Falkirk this afternoon.
The wide man won the penalty that was scored by Nicky Clark to seal victory down at Queen of the South and it was a sight to behold as all his teammates piled on Clark to celebrate.
For Pawlett, that was just another sign of how united United are as they prepare for the promotion run-in.
He said: “The one thing I have noticed since coming in is how close everyone is.
“The majority of the team has only been together for a few weeks but it doesn’t feel like that.
“It feels like we have been together for seasons and that’s a good thing.
“The turnaround in players has been huge and you wondered if it would feel like coming into a club in the summer.
“For me, though, it has been easy because I have played with quite a few of the boys before.
“I played with Cammy Smith, Fraser Fyvie and Mark Reynolds at Aberdeen, while I was with Aidan Nesbitt at MK Dons.
“So I came into the dressing-room knowing a fair chunk of the players who are here.
“The other ones, I knew of them from playing against them so it’s all good.”
Pawlett admitted that United’s stature as a club – despite their residence in the Championship – was a big reason for his return to Scotland.
He said: “United is a big club and I always remember the big games when I came here with Aberdeen.
“So we want to win the league and get back to that.
“But it won’t be easy because Ross County are in the lead and we are the ones who have to peg them back.
“All we can do is go into every game looking to win and see what happens.
“We have showed character in the last few games and we will need that.”
Pawlett will no doubt get some special attention from the Bairns today but he is enjoying being back among the hustle and bustle of football north of the border after his time in Milton Keynes.
“I missed Scottish football when I was down the road,” he added.
“The passion and competitiveness up here is something you miss.
“You love Scottish football when you play in it and I like the battling aspect of it.
“MK Dons was OK but it didn’t go the way I hoped.
“Relegation wasn’t good, obviously, and then at the start of this season I broke my foot and was out for a while.
“The people there were nice and the place was OK, albeit maybe a bit boring at times.
“But as an experience going to England was something I wanted to do and I’m glad I did it, even though it didn’t work out.
“I have learned from it.”
Courier Talking Football podcast: Click here for the latest episodes
Of course, Pawlett worked under United gaffer Robbie Neilson when the pair were down south.
He said: “Working again with the manager was a big factor in my coming here.
“I really enjoyed it at MK Dons with him, liked his approach to the game and how he wants to play suits me.
“The gaffer has a lot of passion and fight so you will see that in our team.
“The vision the gaffer, (sporting director) Tony Asghar and the board have for the club is massive and they want to give it a go.
“When I spoke to them it was clear they have big plans so I wanted to be part of that.”