Twelve months ago, almost to the day, Dundee United were playing St Mirren off the park and beating them 4-0.
Nadir Ciftci was banging the goals in (he got two that afternoon), Ryan Gauld was bewildering defenders, Andy Robertson’s marauding down the touchline was starting to be taken for granted, and John Souttar was spraying the ball about Tannadice like a veteran.
Jackie McNamara could even afford to leave Stuart Armstrong on the bench this time last year.
So you can see why on Saturday night, after a depressing defeat to Inverness Caley Thistle, Dundee United fans would have gladly turned the clock back a year rather than just an hour.
It’s possible (probable) that United won’t produce the sort of football at any point this season that blew Saints away that day, and would do the same to Motherwell on their own pitch a couple of weeks later.
That team had a once in a generation feel about it last autumn, even if the form faded in the winter and spring.
But, if they can’t surpass the silky soccer of the class of 2013/14, the 2014/15 team has an opportunity to do what their predecessors couldn’t. Win a trophy.
The League Cup is a fantastic opportunity to do just that, and McNamara will know it.
It’s probably no coincidence that the United boss has been at his most critical of his team as the biggest game of their season looms large. He wants a reaction.
Saturday’s defeat, and the manner of it, will have been worthwhile if he gets it.