Scott Robertson insists Ayr United will see a different Raith Rovers to the one that was trounced at Somerset Park in November when the teams meet at Stark’s Park this Saturday.
The midfielder was forced to play in defence that night, while others limped through the game as an injury-hit Rovers side went down to a resounding 3-0 defeat at the home of their League One title rivals.
Raith still have ongoing injury concerns, as do Ayr, but with the Kirkcaldy side in good form, and Robertson now back in his favoured midfield berth, he expects a much-improved display.
“We knew that was a really off night,” Robertson told the Press. “We had a quarter-final on the Saturday and we were carrying a few knocks so we never went there at full strength.
“That’s no excuse – Ayr deserved to win that game – but we know we’ve picked up since then. We gave ourselves a shake and realised that we weren’t that far off it.
“Since then we’ve managed to recruit Regan Hendry from Celtic, who is a good addition, and we’re getting boys back from injury soon which will help make the side look a lot stronger.
“I think Ayr are maybe suffering a little bit now with a few injuries catching up with them. Once they get players back they’ll pick up as well.
“We’re delighted with where we are compared to a few weeks ago, but there’s still three months left to go, and a lot of twists and turns to come.”
Robertson has been a linchpin in the middle of the park this season, and his return to the position has been a factor in Raith’s return to form.
“The manager asked me to step into centre-back, and I’ll play wherever he wants me, but I’ve played my full career in midfield and I just feel comfortable in there,” he said.
“Whoever I’ve been in there with we’ve been able to strike up a partnership.
“At the moment it’s Lewis Vaughan, but John Herron was back on the bench on Saturday, Ross Matthews can play in there, and earlier in the season it was Ross Callachan.
“I was enjoying that and it was a shame that got separated so early, but I’m just thankful I’m still at this club after the season I had last year and it’s a marvellous opportunity for me to prolong my career.”
Robertson is also on the coaching staff this season but he admitted he has taken a back seat recently in order to refocus on his own game.
“Out of all the coaches at the club I’m probably doing the least because I’m training and trying to keep myself in good playing condition,” he explained.
“I think I was maybe trying to do too much of that earlier in the season and the manager dealt with the situation well and said that maybe I needed to take a step back from it and focus on the playing side.
“Since then I’ve refocused on playing and been enjoying it even more. I still enjoy the coaching side of it and it’s really important to me to help the young players come through because we do have a few rough diamonds there.”