Kilmarnock V Inverness CT at Rugby Park : Match Preview

16 December 2016
Kilmarnock V Inverness CT - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Kilmarnock's Luke Hendrie relishing hectic festive schedule

Kilmarnock defender Luke Hendrie spent last Christmas tucking into a turkey dinner - this year he is looking forward to a feast of first-team action.

The on-loan Burnley right-back is gearing up for his first experience of a packed out festive schedule.

Killie face Inverness, St Johnstone, Hearts and Partick Thistle all before the New Year bells.

But while his friends and family will be looking forward to pulling crackers and extra helpings of stuffing, 22-year-old Hendrie admits the best gift he could receive this month is to know he will keep his place in Lee Clark's line-up.

Hendrie said: "This is the first time I have played over the Christmas period. I've not really experienced this before.

"In years gone by I'd have been eating turkey and roast potatoes at this time of year.

"When you're playing in the Under-21s, you usually get some time off around this bit of December but I was always a bit jealous of guys getting to play. I'd just normally end up going to a game on Boxing Day, but I'd much rather be out there on the pitch.

"Now I can't wait to get involved with Kilmarnock. It's a busy period but I'll take it all in my stride. It makes you feel like a proper full-time professional.

"At this time of year, people on the outside are getting ready for Christmas but for players, Christmas isn't really for us.

"It's just one of those sacrifices you have to make."

Killie welcome Caley Thistle to Ayrshire this weekend with memories of their last clash still painfully fresh.

The Highlanders snatched a late draw back in October despite trailing for almost 80 minutes but Hendrie hopes his side make amends on Saturday.

He said: "We were comfortable in that game but didn't take our chances. One-nil can be a dangerous scoreline. Hopefully we can turn them over here."

Brad McKay feels the amount of players beating the pain barrier to feature for Inverness bodes well for the future.

McKay played through a heavy knock in last weekend's 1-1 draw with Hamilton amid Gary Warren's suspension and a knee injury for David Raven.

And goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams is set to ignore back pain for a second week on Saturday.

McKay said: "It's one of those squads that are tough. Everyone is looking after each other - they're asking you how you are when you're injured. We come in after the (Hamilton) game really disappointed not to have picked up three points. On the flipside, it's a good point considering that boys aren't fit. Boys are playing through injuries, being 50 or 60 per cent fit.

"They don't want to let anyone down and more importantly, not letting themselves down. If you can give something to the team, even if it's 45-60 minutes, then you're done, that's what a team is. It's a squad that's going to do well.

"The break coming up will do our squad good. The boys can get a wee bit of time away."

Kilmarnock Match Reports

Scottish Premiership Sat 30th December 15:00

Hibernian 1 - 1 Kilmarnock

Last game - Match Centre

Trending on the boards