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Kerr: Early defeats have made Ayr stronger

Mark Kerr says learning lessons in defeat during his early days as a manager helped Ayr cause the shock of the William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round.

Stephen Bell’s goal saw Ayr upset Ross County in a 1-0 victory at Somerset Park.

Since being appointed in October, Kerr has lost six of his first 11 games in charge.

But Kerr, whose team are third in the Ladbrokes Championship, says defeats against Dundee United, Inverness and Queen of the South helped teach his team how to beat the Staggies.

“Sometimes when you lose you learn more,” he said.

“You don’t want to lose games, but for me I look back at some of the previous games we had at the start.

“We have managed to learn from it and the team have managed to embed in ideas.

“Things are now going smoothly and we are progressing.”

Kerr was pleased his team managed to control the match by limiting Ross County to a few chances.

“We felt we controlled the game and gave out the balls in the right area and capitalised when we found space,” he said.

“We played a nice combination of passes and got onto the second ball. We were picking up balls in the middle park that we usually don’t do.

“It breeds confidence we can play both ways.”

Ross County have only won two of their last 15 games in all competitions and co-manager Stuart Kettlewell says his squad are a long way off the standard required.

“We got what we deserved,” he said.

“We will not say that because we had much of the ball in the second half we deserved a draw.

“It is miles off what we expect in the two years that I have been in this job.

“We will give ourselves a major problem if we approach games in that manner again.”