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343558 / Blog / Football / Livingston

Livingston boss Gary Holt looking forward to having range of options up front

Livingston boss Gary Holt looking forward to having range of options up front

Livi had been relying on Dolly Menga up front.

Livingston manager Gary Holt is looking forward to having a range of strike options after Ryan Hardie made his comeback off the bench during Wednesday’s 2-0 defeat by Kilmarnock.

The on-loan Rangers forward had only played 12 minutes this season before coming on just after the hour mark at Rugby Park, after being hit by ankle and thigh injuries.

With Lee Miller and Rafa De Vita out with long-term knee injuries, Livi had been relying on Dolly Menga up front with midfielder Scott Robinson and 18-year-old Jack Hamilton also being utilised.

So Holt is pleased that he will have Hardie at his disposal in the coming weeks.

“It will be great but we have to be careful because he came back and hurt his thigh,” Holt said. “So we have to take baby steps with him.

“It’s pleasing to have him back doing what he does well, getting in the box and getting on the end of chances.

“We are unfortunate that’s where we have had a lot of injuries. But we are delighted to have him back and are delighted that Lee Miller and Rafa are not far away. That gives us good strike options and different strike options.

“We were probably a bit pigeon-holed with just Dolly fit and then he gets suspended and it’s square pegs in round holes.

“But we didn’t create enough on Wednesday for our boys to score goals. You could have eight strikers on the pitch, if you don’t create enough you are not going to score goals.”

Miller could be back in action before the winter break while De Vita might have to wait longer.

“They are joining in bits and bobs in training but it’s low impact stuff,” Holt said. “We will maybe get Lee back but it’s a big ask.”

Holt expects a reaction at home to St Mirren on Saturday after his side struggled to come back after Greg Stewart netted a free header from a third-minute corner.

“We have had that already in training,” he said. “They are not happy, they are not happy with each other, and that’s a good thing not to accept that it happened.

“We know we will get a reaction, that’s a good thing about them. They are hungry and they are hurting.”

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