Naismith embarrassed after Coyle’s Ross County departure

Jason Naismith feels embarrassed after watching his second Ross County boss depart the club this season.

Owen Coyle quit just five months after he was called in to replace sacked predecessor Jim McInally.

Under-20s coach Stuart Kettelwell has been put in charge for the remainder of the season but faces a battle to rescue the Staggies from relegation.

However, Naismith believes it is the players who must take responsibility for the fact the Dingwall side sit three points adrift at the bottom of the Ladbrokes Premiership standings with just 10 games left to save their top-flight status.

The right-back told Press Association Sport: “I don’t like to be associated with being bottom of the league. I don’t like being associated with the way we are playing. It’s a bit embarrassing to be where we are actually.

“It’s a bit embarrassing that we’ve lost two good managers this season and we as players have to take a bit of responsibility for that.

“There is a common denominator there and it’s up to us to get more focused on the game and eradicate the individual errors which have cost us.

“We’ve not been good enough collectively.”

Naismith suffered relegation with St Mirren in 2015 and is desperate not to experience another demotion nightmare after witnessing the effect it had on the Buddies’ back-room team.

But he has backed Kettlewell and his number two Steven Ferguson to provide the spark which will rescue the Highlanders from the drop.

“Kets and Fergie are great coaches,” said Naismith. “They have worked wonders up here with the Academy boys.

“Kets is a good guy but more importantly, a good coach with a lot of knowledge about the game and I’m looking forward to working with him.

“They have come in today and briefed the players on what the club is all about and what it means to the community.

“If the players don’t recognise the situation we’re in and how severe it is, then we shouldn’t be playing football.

“I’ve had a relegation before with St Mirren and it’s not a nice thing. The worst thing about it is people ended up losing their jobs because of it – staff like the tea ladies who had been there since I joined the club were let go.

“Speaking for myself, I’m definitely trying my hardest to make sure that doesn’t happen here because there are a lot of great people behind the scenes at Ross County.

“We need a wee gee-up and hopefully Kets can give us that and then we’ll start climbing the table.

“There is definitely enough quality-wise in the dressing room for us to stay up but talent isn’t always enough.

“We’ve been slack this season and let two managers down. We’ve let the fans down – but we’ve got a fresh start with Kets and it’s over to us as players to find a way out.”

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