Raith Rovers boss Ray McKinnon is insisting he has banished any negative thoughts ahead of tonight’s crunch Championship clash at Morton despite going to Greenock burdened with a crippling injury list.
The Stark’s Park manager has not had his troubles to seek in recent weeks and once again he will be without a whole host of players including skipper Jason Thomson, Grant Anderson and Lewis Toshney.
However, he revealed that others such as Iain Davidson and Kyle Benedictus are set to play through the pain barrier while the experienced Jon Daly is itching to be given a start against Jim Duffy’s side.
McKinnon said: “We will still have a team to put out against Morton and I fully expect them to be competitive.
“We had 11 players out injured earlier this week but we do not want to focus on that.
“We really need to accentuate the positive.
“I will still have a strong squad to play on Friday and I expect them to deliver as they are good players.
“Iain Davidson has a broken nose but he insists he will play. He was going to wear a mask but he says it gets in the way when he heads the ball so he will do without.
“So full credit to him.
“Benny has had a scan and he has bruising and damage on his knee. Further down the line he may need an op but he told me on Tuesday that he would be playing on Friday.
“He’s the type who will play through and that is the sort of character we have at the club.
“Rory McKeown is going to train even although his ankle is swollen. If he was out, Darren Petrie would step in but he is injured as well.
“We have our problems but no matter what, we will be having a right good go on Friday.
“We will focus on the positives and we still have a lot of good players ready to step in.
“David Bates has done well since he came back from Brechin, Ross Callachan has been good after his injury and we also have Jon Daly ready to come back in.
“We have a very good group with strong characters and despite all the injuries, we are still right in there in the league.”
Morton are currently on a red-hot run and are unbeaten in seven league games.
They also have an in-form striker in on-loan Birmingham player Denny Johnstone who has netted nine times already this season.
However, while under no illusions about the difficulty of tonight’s game, McKinnon points to the fact that Rovers have already beaten Morton this term and he is looking for them to do so again.
The manager added: “They are doing really well at the moment and it will be a tough game.
“But if we can give a good account of ourselves, I can see us going down there and getting a victory.
“They have good, experienced players right through their team like Michael Tidser, Ross Forbes and Denny Johnstone from Birmingham, who I know well when I worked with him when he was with the Scotland Under-17s.
“They also have Alex Samuels from Cardiff along with Stefan McCluskey and Bobby Barr. They are a strong team.
“But we have beaten them already this year.”
Meanwhile, Raith Rovers are planning to use their final home match of 2015 when Alloa pitch up on Boxing Day to mark the 20-year anniversary of their UEFA Cup matches against Bayern Munich.
A club spokesperson said: “We have a number of activities planned to recall our European adventure against the German giants.
“We would encourage Rovers fans to come along to the game in Rovers or Bayern Munich tops, scarves or colours. It would be great if they dug out their original tops from 1995 if they still fit!
“We are planning a display in the south stand concourse of photos, pictures, mementos and interesting memorabilia from our Bayern Munich home and away encounters.
“If anyone has something that they would like to share we would ask them to contact the club before Monday.”