As the team that has just come down from the Premiership, Dundee United will be one of the favourites to win promotion from the Championship this season.
However, Raith’s Kyle Benedictus has warned that the Tangerines, under his former boss Ray McKinnon, will quickly find out just how tough a league they are now in.
And he insisted that the players at Tannadice will also have to play under a heavy burden of expectation as he discovered when he was at city rivals Dundee.
The centre-half said: “When I was at Dens, it was the hardest league to get out of.
“You also see that with Hibs, who have been there the last three years.
“They will be one of the favourites to go up this season along with Falkirk and United.
“We also have a good squad of players and if the manager can bring in another couple of lads, we can be challenging up there again.
“It is an open league and I can’t say who is going to win it but one thing is certain, it will be tough for Dundee United.
“They will not fancy coming to play Raith, Falkirk and Queen of the South away.
“It is a really difficult league but United have a good manager who I can’t speak highly enough of.
“He was brilliant with me last year and if there is one person who can get them back up, it is going to be Ray.
“But their fans will want to get up at the first time of asking so there will be a lot of pressure on them.”
The United squad now also includes former Raith player Lewis Toshney who joined the Tangerines last month.
Benedictus admitted he will be a big loss for Rovers but life moves on and he cannot wait to be in opposition to his former team-mate.
He added: “He was the fans’ player of the year last season.
“He was a good player to have at the club. He stayed injury free and played more or less every game.
“I think all the boys know how good a player he is and he is a loss.
“But we cannot dwell on people leaving – it has happened everywhere I have been.
“So, good luck to him. It is a great move and obviously Ray liked him – but I’ll not be saying that when I play against him.
“He can play just about every position on the park so hopefully he’ll be at striker in the first United game!”
Benedictus recently became an Internet sensation when pictures were posted online of him on the first day of pre-season training with his hair in braids.
It was certainly a talking point with his team-mates but boss Gary Locke quickly made his own feelings known about exactly what he thought of it.
Benedictus added: “I am not on social media but my mates were saying it was on Twitter and Facebook.
“I was also getting stick from Dunfermline fans.
“I had just been on holiday with my missus and she got the braids put in for travelling back so her hair didn’t go all frizzy.
“So I just asked if the wee woman who did it could do something similar with my hair.
“I was always going to take it out but I just thought I had to come in on the first day of pre-season to see the boys’ reaction and obviously the manager – who immediately told me to get them out!”