Win over Dundee United the ‘benchmark’ for Raith Rovers in relegation battle, says John Hughes

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John Hughes has told Raith Rovers their win over Dundee United should be the benchmark for the remainder of their relegation battle.

The Stark’s Park side responded to recent stinging criticism from Hughes by earning a vital three points in last Saturday’s 2-1 win over Dundee United.

The performance was night and day from the previous week’s 4-0 hammering from Dumbarton that sparked Hughes’ withering blast.

And the former Hibs and Inverness boss has urged his side to improve their consistency against Queen of the South at home on Saturday as they bid to extend their current five-point advantage over bottom side St Mirren.

He said: “Last Saturday was a good result. Once again, there was a contrast in the performance from one week to another and that is something we need to put right.

“But they’ve set the benchmark and we’ve been good at home, so hopefully we can take that form and result from last week – and the confidence and momentum it gives us – into Saturday’s match.

“The criticism was a wee bit of reverse psychology, in terms of making sure we know where we are and what kind of team we are.

“So, there were a few home truths and then it was about bringing it all together.

STANDARDS

“We have to look after ourselves, we’ve got our standards – what we play to and what we expect from each other.

“And we just need to implement that on Saturday.”

Meanwhile, Raith could welcome former Kilmarnock keeper Conor Brennan back to their squad this weekend.

Rovers were left without a goalie and had to field Ryan Stevenson between the sticks against Ayr United after Brennan was injured against Queen of the South four weeks ago.

They then snapped up Slovakian Pavol Penksa on a short-term deal but have been operating without back-up in recent games because of longer-term injuries to Kevin Cuthbert and Aaron Lennox.

However, Brennan is back in training and could be back on the bench for the visit of Queens.

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