Dundee United central defender Rachid Bouhenna knows today’s trip to Greenock will be the calm before the play-off storm.
The Tangerines face a match against Morton this afternoon with little at stake other than keeping their momentum going into the matches that will decide whether or not they will play in the top flight next season.
They will face either Inverness Caley Thistle or Ayr United in the play-off semi-final first leg away on Tuesday, May 14 before returning to Tannadice for the second match on Friday 17.
If they get over that hurdle then it will be the 11th-placed Premiership side – currently St Mirren – in the final on Thursday 23 (home) and Sunday 26 (away). All the fixtures will be televised live on BT Sport.
It is a challenge that will test every United player to the limit but Bouhenna is looking forward to facing it.
“We have to keep winning until the end of the season and that means beating Morton,” said the French-born Algerian.
“It is important going into the play-off to be ready and have your confidence high.
“We prepare ourselves and don’t look at what has happened to the club in the past.
“We are positive because we have had good results, including some clean sheets.
“We are ready and waiting for these games.
“I have never been involved in a play-off before – it will be my first time.
“It will be a tough challenge and a very important one for the club.
“It will be intense for the players.
“The games are so close together – two games in three days – so that will be physically demanding.
“We will have to prepare ourselves very well because of those demands,” added Bouhenna, who scored United’s first goal in their 2-0 win over bottom side Falkirk at Tannadice last weekend.
“Our team have been working very hard and maybe we still have some players who have not played so much this season and will be fresh as a result.
“It will not be like the league games, more like cup matches.
“They are home and away and if you lose then you are out.
“We have been looking at everything that can happen.
“If we get through the first tie then we will play Hamilton or St Mirren, I think.
“I hope we can get promoted because we have worked so hard this season.”
United manager Robbie Neilson will have the play-offs at the back of his mind this afternoon but insists he won’t be making wholesale changes to the team that beat the Bairns.