Mackay backs County to 'thrive' against Rangers

Malky Mackay has backed his Ross County players to once again "thrive" on pressure when Rangers visit on Saturday.

County were taken to extra time in last weekend's Viaplay Cup tie with Airdrieonians but won 4-3 in the end.

And the Dingwall side recovered from a three-goal deficit to beat Partick Thistle in last season's Scottish Premiership play-off final.

"I think what it does is it gives evidence that they can handle pressure," Mackay told County's YouTube channel.

"We did it at the end of last season and we did it again in getting through the tie in a high pressure situation.

"When you play the Old Firm, that's always the case. It will be a full house here, it will be pretty rowdy and it's live on television, but players should embrace that and should want to play under pressure.

"But you learn to handle that over a period of time and we have had situations recently where this group look as though they thrive under pressure."

County opened their league campaign with defeat at Celtic Park but beat St Johnstone the following week.

"It's always important that you keep that momentum going from winning games and confidence is bred by that as well," Mackay said.

"We have had a good start to the season in terms of winning the League Cup group and getting through to the quarter-finals and winning our first home league game as well.

"It's important we have that confidence going into the game and a little bit of momentum. It's going to be a tough test for us but we have to make sure we go into it with as much confidence as we can."

Ross County manager Malky Mackay and his players celebrate their recent win over Airdrieonians
Malky Mackay (centre) celebrates Ross County's win over Airdrieonians