TERRY Butcher is not admitting defeat in his fight to keep Adam Rooney at Caley Thistle. Despite speculation linking Rooney with a move away from the Highland Capital club throughout last month, the January transfer window came and went with the striker still an Inverness player.
The 22-year-old, who took his goal tally for the season to 16 with two in the 5-1 Scottish Cup success against Morton last weekend, can still sign a pre-contract elsewhere, however, as his present deal with Caley Thistle expires at the end of the season.
For now, both Rooney and Butcher are happy to concentrate on matters on the pitch rather than off it, although the latter reiterated his desire to keep a hold of his top scorers services beyond the end of the season.
And he revealed another contract offer is in the pipeline in a bid to tempt the Irishman to stay.
I think not only has the transfer window closing taken a weight off Adams shoulders, its taken a weight off everyone at the club as well, said Butcher about Rooney, who was subject of a £100,000 from Russian club Kuban Krasnodar, while he also held talks with Scottish Premier League side Hibernian last month.
He looked the part again against Morton and we have always said that this club doesnt want to lose him.
The plan is to offer him another contract eventually, but that will all be done in due course. It is not something weve put a timescale on.
Having convincingly overcome Morton last time out, Caley Thistle head to Paisley brimming with confidence for tomorrows SPL clash against a St Mirren side struggling near the bottom of the table.
Butcher, however, was cautious when asked if he felt his side had turned a corner with their demolition of the Greenock club last time out.
I wouldnt go as far to say that weve turned a corner because our only two wins this year have come in the Scottish Cup, he said.
Perhaps if we win two or three more games then we can say that, but it was nice to take that first step on the road to recovery by beating Morton.
We played very well against a decent Morton team. We created plenty of chances, while we missed a few, particularly Adam Rooney!
We have gone through a bit of a sticky patch. However, this season has been a fantastic one for us so far and we want to make sure we end it in as high a position as we possibly can.
Butcher will have to make one enforced change from the team that trounced Morton with Ross Tokely serving a one-match suspension for the visit to St Mirren. Fellow defender Grant Munro is also suspended.
Nick Ross is definitely out with a foot injury, as is Dani Sanchez after breaking his hand, while Jonny Hayes is a doubt as he strives to recover from the bone bruising he sustained during the 2-0 home defeat to Aberdeen last month.
* Caley Thistles Scottish Cup quarter-final tie at home to either Rangers or Celtic will be shown live on Sky Sports on Sunday 13th March (kick-off 3.30pm).
Meanwhile, Inverness have had their twice-postponed SPL match against Dundee United at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium rescheduled for Tuesday 1st March with a 7.45pm kick-off.