Jackie McNamara, the Dundee United manager, is not fazed by the prospect of opening the new campaign with matches against teams which finished in the top three last season.

The Tannadice side begin the season against Aberdeen on Sunday, before subsequent meetings with Motherwell and then Celtic.

Those fixtures might have perturbed McNamara as they could prevent his side from enjoying any momentum, but the coach was philosophical about the challenge which faces his players.

Loading article content

"We need to play everybody at some point so whether we got the top three from last season or the lowest finishers it doesn't really matter," said McNamara, who intends to send young goalkeeper Marc McCallum out on loan. "They are all hard games and every club wants to start well and kick off with a win.

"It is important that we try to get a victory to begin the season with and there will be a great crowd at Pittodrie."