James McPake was left furious after a 2-0 defeat to Ayr United – but a 1-0 loss to Hibs in the League Cup left him with far more pride in his Dundee players.

The Dee lost to the Honest Men last weekend, leading to scathing criticism, including harsh words from experienced Dark Blues man Paul McGowan. They improved for their trip to Easter Road but it wasn’t enough.

Hibernian v Dundee

Defeat in the end. (Photo by Paul Devlin/SNS Group via Getty Images)

A Jamie Murphy strike before the end of the first-half handed Hibs cup progression, the two already meeting in the group stages of this competition.

RONALDO NEEDS TO STOP WHINING.

Speaking after the last 16 exit, Dundee boss McPake was pleased with his squad: “Last week against Ayr we were terrible, there were improvements all over the pitch on Saturday and there was a real desire to get after the ball, there was controlled aggression about us.

“I thought we picked up a couple of bookings unfairly, I think it was both teams being very competitive in the game. We were competitive and on the plus side of that, we weren’t at Ayr last week.

Hibernian v Dundee

The Murphy goal beat the Dee. (Photo by Paul Devlin/SNS Group via Getty Images)

“We were soft but on Saturday we certainly weren’t soft, we fought our corner well. “The boys are gutted in there because there was no way we deserved to lose that game.

“We were not happy with ourselves last weekend but we were miles better here. We played with the aggression and commitment I wanted to see.

“I hate saying it because it means you’ve lost, but there are ways to lose games and the players can be proud of themselves after that. If we keep playing like that we’ll win games in our league most weeks.”

Have something to tell us about this article?