MORTON boss Dougie Imrie is aiming to exploit Airdrie’s expansive playing style in today’s SPFL Trust Trophy quarter final clash.

The Ton chief says that his counterpart in the dugout, Rhys McCabe, deserves lots of praise for the philosophy that he wants his players to implement.

But he believes that it also leaves the Diamonds with gaps in the backline that can be exposed.

Ton suffered a narrow defeat against them back in September, on a day when they missed several chances to level the game.

Imrie says his men need to be more ruthless but believes they can take heart from their battling performance against Partick last weekend.

He told the Tele: “Rhys and his staff at Airdrie deserve a lot of credit for how they’ve gone about their season.

“They want to play an open and expansive game of football, which is good on the eye.

“But coming out like that, in my opinion, leaves them exposed and I believe that that’s an area that we can exploit.

“The last time we played them at Cappielow in the league we lost but if Robbie Muirhead’s shot that cannoned off the post had gone in then we go on to win the game.

“Again in that game it was an error that cost us. Calum Gallagher found himself in the middle of the pitch with space and we got attracted to the ball, allowing him to slice it out wide and for wee Lewis McGregor to put it away.

“On another day that finishes 0-0, but we have to take strength from Saturday because our performance over the 90 minutes was very strong.

“Until then we’ve had 45 minutes here and there, but on Saturday I believe we put in a full 90 minute performance.

“It just so happens to be that mistakes are costing us massively.

“It's not everyone though, I think it’s certain individuals who aren’t doing their tasks properly. I think they could be doing it a little bit better, because that’s what’s causing us to lose those goals.”

Imrie is still down to the bare bones as injuries continue to ravage his squad and he admits it was a relief no one else was crocked at Firhill last Saturday.

He said: “The boys put in a lot of effort and I think everyone could see that, but injuries are killing us just now. We only had three players on the bench and Ryan the goalkeeper.

“Thankfully we didn’t lose anyone else, everyone came through it fine despite being a bit tired.

“I could’ve changed things if I had different personnel on the bench but unfortunately that wasn't the case so we went with what we had.

“I thought in the 90 minutes the team were good, but if they'd defended better in certain moments we wouldn’t have lost the two goals.”