Scott McMann says last weekend’s win over Kilmarnock was the perfect pick-me-up for Hamilton.
Accies stuttered through their Betfred Cup section and scraped into their second-round showdown with Angelo Alessio’s men at Rugby Park this Saturday after finishing as runners-up to Partick Thistle.
The Lanarkshire squad were then criticised by boss Brian Rice after kicking off their Ladbrokes Premiership campaign with a lacklustre 3-0 defeat at Ross County.
But they got back on track as they piled more pressure on Killie’s under-fire Italian manager with a 2-0 win at the FOYS Stadium.
The teams will go at it again this weekend for a place in the quarter-finals but full-back McMann says last week’s injection of confidence could not have been timed better.
The defender said: “Our performances in the group section of the cup were a mixed bag and then the first league game up in Dingwall wasn’t great.
“But the result last week has put everything right. Getting three points against Killie was a great result.
“It has really boosted our confidence ahead of playing them again on Saturday.
“It was a crucial win. It was important just to get some points on the board but it shows we can also compete with the best teams in the league.
“Now it’s given us that confidence that we need ahead of Saturday. We know now we can beat them.
“It will be a different kind of challenge as Killie have been good at home over the last couple of years.
“But we’ll take confidence from the weekend and believe we’ve got enough to win the game.”
Accies boss Rice has no fresh injuries but will have to reshuffle his defence as Brian Easton begins a two-match ban after being sent off last week.
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