CRAIG GUPWELL insists the clash with Lanark was always going to be a test case.
After losing 5-0 to Lesmahagow on Saturday and with four games in a week Newmains co-managers Gupwell and Paul Davies mixed things up and handed others a chance.
United conceded three goals in each half as Colin Slater’s League Two champs ran away with things at Victoria Park in the second of three League Cup section clashes.
Gupwell said: “I personally hold my hands up for the result after changing too many key positions at the one time in an effort to get some boys who haven’t been playing a bit of game time.
“We spoke before the game about the need for a squad over the course of the season which I stand by.
“But with hindsight we probably made too many changes against one of the best teams we’ll face this year.
“The positive we can take is a few boys who hadn’t played many minutes so far got 90 minutes in their legs. All credit to Lanark who had more quality than us.
“We won’t massively overreact as over the course of pre-season we have performed well at times and shown when we’re on our game we can match teams from the leagues above us.”
Gupwell reckons the League Cup section games were always warmups to the league season, which opens with a home game against Saltcoats on Saturday (kick-off 2pm).
Before then United round off their League Cup sections clash with a trip to another League One side – local rivals Carluke Rovers – tomorrow night (kick-off 7pm).
Gupwell added: “A heavy defeat like the one against Lanark is a test of character for the new boys we have signed for the upcoming season.
“It’s now about seeing a reaction and ultimately making sure we are ready to go in our first league game on Saturday.”