He opted for Jonathan Afolabi on the night – but Dundee manager James McPake believes the Celtic loanee can learn from a Highland start that proved to be the wrong call.

The striker made his fourth start since joining on loan from Celtic at the start of the season away to Inverness midweek but was hooked for Charlie Adam at half-time in the 1-1 draw. Dee manager McPake concedes it was the wrong choice to start the Irish youth international but that’s not a criticism of Afolabi.

The Celtic loanee started against Inverness.

The Celtic loanee started for Dundee against Inverness but was subbed at half-time. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Speaking of the decision to sub the Celtic loanee, McPake said: “I felt for him, I really did. I felt a change had to be made but Jonathan had looked really sharp in training. They say if you get to a point where they are knocking your down door for a start with their performances in training… we think we made the right call giving him a start.

“It wasn’t just down to Jonathan that the first half was really poor. We brought Charlie Adam on for Jonathan on the night but it could have been anyone. As a group we were poor but Charlie came on and made a positive impact.

 

“That makes it look as if Jonathan had a worse night that he actually did, he was on-par with a lot of the players. I was delighted with how Charlie looked and he looked like he did at the start of the season. For Jonathan it’s a learning curve. We thought Jonathan was the right man on the night but he wasn’t.

“I take as much of the blame as Jonathan Afolabi for the first half performance and I believe the other 10 players will take the same responsibility. We were nowhere near the standard where we should be. Development wise this has been great for Jonathan. He’s scored a lot of big goals. He’ll have a really good career somewhere.”

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