Kevin McBride has revealed he’d be happy to stay at Dundee and help them pull off a quick-fire return to the SPL.
McBride has been told by Dens Park boss John Brown he’s part of his plans as the relegated side begin their rebuilding job aimed at winning promotion back to the top-flight next season.
The Dark Blues are having to cut costs for next season’s tilt at the First Division campaign with players such as Rab Douglas, Davide Grassi and Don Cowan already being told they won’t be offered new deals.
But former Hibs and Motherwell midfielder McBride, whose deal is set to end in early June, admits he’s setting his sights on getting Dundee back to where they feel they belong following the heartache of their recent relegation after a seven-year exile from Scottish football’s top table.
McBride said: “I’ve spoken to the manager so we’ll see what happens in the next week or two. But he’s wanting me to stay for next season which is the important thing.
“I’ve still got a few weeks left here on my current contract. There’s obviously no rush to sign anything but I do enjoy my time here with the rest of the boys. I think if you ask any of the players, or even anyone else at the club, they’ll tell you the same thing; we believe we’ll come straight back up next season.
“It’s a difficult league the First Division but we know we’ve got the players to do it.”
McBride admits it’s a huge relief to know he’s wanted having being forced to endure an uncertain future when he left Hibs back in 2011 before being given the chance to kick-start his career at Dens the following year.
And the 31-year-old playmaker reckons keeping the nucleus of the current squad can be the key in their quest to lift the First Division title.
McBride said: “I was out of the game for a wee while after leaving Hibs so I know what it’s like to be without a club and all the worry which that brings.
“I think it’s getting worse each year now in Scotland if I’m being honest. That’s just the way it seems to be going.”
Dundee were denied a send-off victory in their final home game of the campaign but this time it was nothing to do with being robbed by match officials on the day.
Instead Kenny Shiels’ Killie were just too hot to handle in this five-goal thriller which was anything but an end-of-season affair.
Rory McKenzie’s fourth minute wonder goal set the heather alight as he left five Dundee players for dead before finishing calmly past Steve Simonsen.
Ryan Conroy did level for the hosts in 17 minutes before Killie kid Chris Johnston restored the visitors lead in 58 minutes thanks to his textbook low 20-yarder which was then eclipsed by skipper Sammy Clingan’s late clincher as he stroked the ball home from 25-yards.
Dundee, who hit a late consolation through substitute Mark Stewart, couldn’t come up with the morale-boosting win on the same day departing keeper Rab Douglas waved an emotional farewell to the fans at half-time.
There’s been plenty fight in recent weeks in their brave quest to avoid the drop until their fate was finally sealed at home to Aberdeen the week before.
And McBride thanked the loyal Dundee fans for backing them to the hilt as a strenuous season draws to a close.
He said: “Since I’ve been here the supporters have backed us all the way. They’ve been brilliant that way and it does help the lads on the park. It’s been a difficult season but they’ve stuck with us and you can’t ask for any more than that.
“We were just gutted we weren’t able to keep them up but sometimes that’s football. We would have loved to have given them a win in our final home game of the campaign but it wasn’t to be.
“We’ve done well in recent weeks but unfortunately we’ve still come up short in the end.”