Ray McKinnon reckons resting his players could give Raith Rovers an advantage in Championship play-offs



Raith Rovers manager Ray McKinnon reckons being able to rest his players ahead of the Championship play-offs could prove crucial.

The Stark’s Park side will take on either Hibs or Falkirk in the next Wednesday’s quarter-final first leg and are facing a potential six matches in 19 days if they are to get promoted to the Premiership.

With this in mind, McKinnon has rotated his team in recent weeks to keep the players fresh for the prospect of a gruelling run of games.

McKinnon changed his squad for 2-2 draw with Falkirk at the weekend

That included making five changes in weekend’s penultimate league match when Rovers fought out a 2-2 draw the Bairns.

And McKinnon, whose side complete the league campaign with a trip to Livingston on Sunday, is hoping his team have a spring in their step going into the play-offs.

He said: “We’ll have a freshness going into the play-offs and I think that’s key.

“Come the end of the season and with potentially six big games coming up – you want to be as fresh as you can.

“You don’t want to be playing the same laboured team all the time. We’ve freshened it up and we think we’ve done it the right way, and I think my squad proved against Falkirk on Saturday that they’re capable.

“I mixed the squad up with five players coming in. It just shows you the strength of squad we have going into the play-offs.

“I’ve changed it up five or six times in the last five or six weeks and the boys have constantly given me performances.

“It tells me and it tells the boys that we have a super strong squad going into the play-offs.

“If I can keep them nice and fresh we’d love to lock horns with anybody.

“I’ve got loads of players that will come back into my thoughts.

“It’s a great problem to have because my players will be all fresh.

“We have nothing to fear from anybody, I have a right good team and a right good squad.”