LEE Bullen has hailed the impact of one of his experience players after Ayr United picked up their first three points of the season on Saturday.

It was a performance that was far from vintage, as Bullen joked about the standard of the match as he spoke to Ayr United TV after his side's 1-0 win over Inverness CT at Somerset Park.

He said: “I think that football is away to A&E just to check the bruising it’s had.

But when Bullen spoke to the Advertiser, having had a few more days to digest the game, he seemed far more optimistic.

While he admitted that Saturday's performance was far from vintage, he is hoping that his squad can now turn the corner.

Bullen commented: “I think we’re just getting frustrated because our first two league games we have gone off-piste a wee bit in terms of where we were, in terms of performance, in the cup games.

“But they’ve [the players] proved they can do it, I’m sure we’ll come back to it and show that sort of bravery.

“Ultimately, the most difficult three points of any season are your first three, and that’s that ticked off now and those nerves and trepidation are taken away.

“We can just settle into it now and get on with what we need to do.”

And Bullen added that he is not concerned, despite his side showing nerves signs after going 1-0 ahead in the past two weeks.

Only last week he told the Advertiser about his frustrations that his side stopped playing football against Morton - a game they went on to lost 3-1.

READ MORE: Boss says Ayr won't change play style despite battling loss at Morton

And as his players seemed to opt for the long ball tactic after the half hour mark on Saturday, Bullen is hoping that this will become a thing of the past after picking up a win.

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“Hopefully it takes a bit of pressure off," he said, "but our next league game is against Dundee United who are everybody’s favourites to go straight back up.

“We’ve got to show a little bit more belief and bravery - as we did against St Johnstone.

“I’m not getting overly stressed about it, we will find our way back.”

And Bullen is hoping that his experienced players can play a major part.

After Saturday's match, Bullen hailed winger and coach Aiden McGeady for doing exactly that.

McGeady came on to the park for the last half an hour, with many fans impressed with the flashes of genius shown by the experienced Irish international.

The manager commented: “We started that game on Saturday with eight players who are 24 and under.

“We are a very young team; with that comes nerves. With that lack of experience comes a bit of trepidation – especially when you’re leading in a game and you’re still trying to get your first win of the season.

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“To bring on the experience of Aiden, which we missed with Jamie Murphy not being available, was vital.

“Again, he’s still playing catch up with his fitness, he’s still a few weeks away, but you can see the influence he’s having throughout the squad and he was unlucky not to get a goal on Saturday.”

Bullen was also delighted to see Franny Amartey score his first goal in black and white at the weekend.

He said: “I’m delighted for the kid, he’s been up and down, doing well in some games but maybe not as well in other games.

“To get that goal, it just eases that pressure a little bit.

“Once Ahkeem (Rose) gets back to full fitness then that pressure baton is handed over to him to try and get his first (league) goal.

“But as long as we are sharing the goals around I don’t particularly mind.”

Now Ayr will be hoping to continue to build momentum despite being out of league action next weekend.

Instead, they travel to face Livingston in the last 16 of the Viaplay League Cup with the Ayr boss expecting a tough tie against a side who will be reeling after a 4-0 loss away to Rangers this weekend.

“Away to Livingston’s a tough nut to crack," Bullen commented. "Even the big two in Scotland have found it tough to go to the Tony Macaroni, so we know it’s going to be very tough.

“They’ve [Livingston] taken a sore one on Saturday but the majority of people that go to Ibrox or Celtic Park do so they’ll bounce back from that.

“Physically it’s going to be a battle but we’re going to have to show a bit more confidence in ourselves and the hope is to go up there and cause an upset.

“We’ll be everybody’s underdog but it’s a great opportunity for us to put ourselves against Premier League players.”