JOHN TRIPP has called on his Braehead Clan to not ‘disrespect’ the game and compete as they desperately scramble to find their feet this season.

Nine games have already come and gone in the EIHL for the Glasgow club and only three wins have been garnered along the way, leaving them third bottom of the pile with only Dundee Stars and the Edinburgh Capitals below.

A fair chunk of those defeats were inflicted during Braehead’s month on the road during September, with many of the club’s support expecting form to pick up when the home comforts of the Braehead Arena could take hold. It hasn’t happened.

On their first game back rivals Fife Flyers turned them over 7-1 before losing away to Sheffield Steelers the following night, and while a 5-3 home win was recorded on Saturday against Edinburgh, that was followed up the following evening with another trouncing from Fife in Kirkcaldy, this time 5-1.

Tripp is not quite at the stage of hitting any sort of panic button. That said, the new Clan head coach has made it abundantly clear to his men what will be required from them tomorrow night when big hitters Nottingham Panthers come to Glasgow in the Challenge Cup.

“We have to show up. We have two days of train in then we will get back at. It’s good we can play at home, but Nottingham are a good team,” said Tripp, who was without the injured Adam Brace and Mike Embach on Sunday night.

“We have got to compete. I don’t mind losing as long as you compete because you can’t get frustrated with that. But if it goes the other way it’s just a lack of respect for the game.

“It’s definitely a frustration with Adam Brace being injured and Mike Embach not being able to play. We lose a lot of depth and experience. I don’t want to keep using the excuse but with new situations it’s tough when the inexperienced are put in those positions.

“Players deal with things differently. If you’re young or just don’t have that experience of being put in the situations for example to be on a powerplay or a penalty kill, getting too much ice time really creates gaps in the team.

“Then mistakes will come. That’s where you need cool, calm and collected and the experienced guys to step up. You need a lot of them.

“Most good teams that go far anywhere always could count to lean on those players and to learn from. And that’s one thing that’s definitely hurting us, especially on the back end.”