Livingston manager Gary Holt expected the first month of the season to be a “war of attrition” after the long damage and reduced build-up.
But he has reminded his players to deliver 90 minutes of the want and endeavour they are renowned for when they host Hibernian on Saturday.
Holt felt his gamers began slowly in their opening Scottish Premiership encounter at St Mirren, which they lost 1-0.
Holt said: “We can’t get over-critical because – we won’t use it as an excuse – however it’s only the fourth sport after 5 months off.
“It will take a wee bit of time, we knew that, we knew there would be some bumps in the avenue this first month. But if we play as well as we did 2nd 1/2 then we won’t be too a ways away.
“We have pushed them as challenging as we can to get them up to velocity however commonly you have performed eight games earlier than you get a league sport in with pre-season friendlies and the League Cup.
“We knew this first month used to be going to be a hostilities of attrition. I have regarded at all the video games at the weekend and I don’t see too many that have been 100 miles an hour, hustle and bustle. And the atmosphere changes, there’s no-one right here and that will affect the players.
“I suppose it’s going to take a few games. When this first month is out and we have played six games and everybody is proper up to healthy tempo, it will be a higher indication. You simply hope you are not too far away.”
However, Holt expects enchancment in opposition to a Hibs aspect who began their season with victory over Kilmarnock.
“They will come right here full of self assurance and it’s a sort of derby sport for us, so we want to be at it, we can’t wait forty five minutes on Saturday and then turn up,” Holt said. “We have to be at it from minute one.
“I said to the boys on Monday, if you ask any Scottish soccer fan what is Livingston Football Club built on, it’s your challenging work and endeavour first and foremost.
“You can dangle your hat on that and I don’t assume we had that on Saturday from the start. That was once the thing that grates on us as staff. Second half of I idea we had it but we need it from the start.”