KAI KENNEDY insists that Dunfermline’s battling display on Saturday showed that the squad is united behind their manager.

And the on-loan Rangers star is aiming to continue to prove that point when Hamilton Academical come calling this weekend after being named in the Scotland under-21 squad for next month’s game with Denmark.

The 19-year-old, who impressed in just his second start for the Pars in the scoreless draw with Inverness Caledonian Thistle, made his debut for the under-21s in their opening Euro 2023 qualifier in Turkey earlier this month.

Kennedy started the match, before being replaced in the 63rd minute, as the Scots drew 1-1 and the highly-rated youngster is keen to be involved once more next month. To do that, though, he knows he has to continue to showcase his talents at club level, where he is confident things can improve after a tough start to the season for Athletic.

With five games played, they remain without a victory at the foot of the table, but Kennedy says that there was enough evidence in the performance with Inverness that they can turn that around quickly.

“There’s a lot of positives to take from the game but I think we’re unfortunate not to get the win,” he said afterwards.

“I think, out of both teams, we had the best chances in the game and, on another day, we could’ve been one or two up. I think we deserved to win.

“The last couple of weeks has been tough for us and I think we showed what we can do, how we’re building and I think it’s getting there. As a team, we showed on the park what we can do.

“As a team, you just need to get together and show what kind of group you are. You can see we trained hard all week and we showed a good performance. On another day, we could’ve got the win.

“You could see we’re all behind each other and we’re all behind the manager.”

Reflecting on his under-21s bow, Kennedy continued: “It was my 21s debut and every player wants to play with the national team.

“I enjoyed that week a lot and just hopefully I’ll keep playing the way I am and get in the next couple of squads.

“Going to Turkey was a hard game. It was tough, and a different experience to playing Championship football, and when you go away with Scotland it’s different tactics that you need to learn quickly.

“Hopefully, if I just keep doing what I’m doing and I’m playing well, I’ll get picked for the next squad.

“It’s obviously tough, there’s a lot of good players out there, but I think you need to prove a point with your club. That’s what gets you in the squads and hopefully what I’m doing the now is enough to prove it.”

As well as feeling as though he was clipped inside the penalty area after a mesmerising first-half run, Kennedy came in for some rough treatment from some old Inverness pals, where he spent time on loan last season.

It didn’t stop him from bouncing back to his feet looking for more, and he noted: “That’s the type of the player I am; I’m going to get fouled and I know that. Actually, I like getting fouled – it might sound stupid but if players are fouling you it shows what you’re doing on the pitch.

“I just want to be positive and direct. I think I’ve still got more to come. The last few weeks, it’s been hard, but I think I’ve done well so far.”