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Tam Courts: Top-six berth would be strong sign Dundee Utd are on their way back

Dundee United v Celtic – Scottish Cup – Quarter Final – Tannadice Park
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Tam Courts has challenged Dundee United to endorse the progress he feels they have made this season by sealing a place in the top six of the cinch Premiership for the first time in seven years.

The Tannadice side are one of seven teams separated by just five points in the battle to land the last three spots in the top half of the table alongside Celtic, Rangers and Hearts.

With just two games to play before the split, United are in a strong position as they are currently in fourth place, at least two points better off than each of the chasing pack.

Courts is hoping they can get over the line and finish in the top half for the first time since 2015.

“It would mean a lot to get into the top six,” said the United manager. “It would be a really strong signal that the club is on its way back after four years in the Championship and then consolidating in the Premiership last year. To push on into the top six would be a really strong statement that the club is moving in the right direction.

“Making the top six would be a successful season, absolutely. This season for us has probably been more about substance than style. We’ve almost been on a transition in terms of having players that have served the club really well in previous years and then migrating towards a few new players coming into the club.

“We’ve given 15 young players opportunities within the first team from our own academy, we’re fighting for the top six and we’ve been in two quarter-finals.”

A last-minute winner away to St Mirren in the last game before the international break has left United in upbeat mood as they prepare to travel to Easter Road to face Hibernian, the side immediately below them in the table.

The Terrors will be backed by a 2,000-strong away support for what is a huge fixture for both sides.

“It’s a significant match and it’s one we feel very optimistic going into considering the performance in the second half and the result at St Mirren,” said Courts.

“The St Mirren game was a significant win. There was a commitment from us to stay the course. It’s just important to focus on the final two games and see the job through to make the top six.

“After beating St Mirren in the manner we did, we’re in confident mood, we know we’ve given ourselves a slight advantage on the competition. We can now go to another away venue knowing another win would be hugely significant for us.”

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