Goalkeeper Marc McCallum believes this week’s clashes with Rangers and Raith Rovers are just the tests Livingston need ahead of the relegation play-offs.
The Lions’ fate was finally sealed at the weekend as David Hopkin’s men went down 3-1 to Queen of the South in Dumfries, consigning the club to a ninth-place finish as nearest rivals Dumbarton preserved their Championship status with a win over St Mirren.
Livi will now travel to either Stranraer, Airdrie or Albion Rovers next Wednesday for the Championship play-off semi-final first leg before the return fixture at the Tony Macaroni Arena on Saturday week.
However, for the time being, Livi must regroup for tonight’s visit of champions Rangers before promotion-chasing Raith are in town this weekend.
“I’m glad we’ve got two games coming up against Rangers and Raith,” said former Dundee United shot-stopper McCallum. “It gives us the chance to find a bit of form going into the play-offs.
“I think if we play well for the 90 minutes, no matter what the score is, we’ll be able to take some confidence into the play-offs. We’ve got to remember we’re in the league above so we’ll be favourites. We’re absolutely gutted to be in the position we are but we need to get prepared mentally for those matches. We’ve got to go and deal with it. I’ve played teams from those leagues before and it’s tough.
“It’s hard to explain because at times this season we’ve played really good football. If you look at the matches against the top three this season, we’ve pushed Rangers, Falkirk and Hibs really hard and taken points of them all. It annoys me because we’re a full-time club and Dumbarton are part time so it’s very frustrating to be in the position we are in.”
Livingston have revealed they will form a guard of honour for title winners Rangers before kick-off tonight. Hibs declined to do so last Wednesday at Easter Road and McCallum said: “I’m easy with this kind of stuff. It’s up to individual clubs what they want to do. The club has said we will do it so that’s fine with me. I respect every team in the league, from Alloa all the way up to Rangers so I’m happy to do it.”