By Calum McCrindle

Stuart Kettlewell is looking for his Ross County players to step up in future performances after a 3-1 defeat to Kilmarnock.

His Staggies side now sit four points above the bottom two. The Staggies are now winless in six matches and have only kept a clean sheet once since the New Year.

Tough week. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Teams above and below them have games in hand so it’s vital that they start getting results soon. With games against Hibs and Aberdeen on the horizon in February, they need to pick up points against their bottom six rivals to avoid slipping further down the table.

Conceding goals is an issue for Ross County and if they are to avoid a relegation dogfight, then they need to shore it up defensively. The results haven’t been going their way as of late and Kettlewell thinks his side need to be stronger if they are going to start picking up points regularly.

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“We’ve put so much in over the last period of time,” he said. “I think it’s been well documented the fixtures that we’ve had, and we’ve given the players lots of credit for what they’ve done against Hearts and Rangers and Celtic away from home.

Hoping for better. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

“The nature of the goals and how we become so disjointed it flashes a sign of a soft centre or us going under a bit which is very frustrating. It’s that element of conceding a goal and that bit of adversity should make us come out the other side fighting.

“It’s reared its head a couple of times for us this season, but we’ve always bounced back. There was the negativity from the Scottish Cup game against Ayr and we’ve been able to come out with some really good performances.

“For us its finding that level of consistency we’re certainly going to have to try and get that reaction on Wednesday against Livingston.”

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