NEW Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes has swiped aside any suggestion that the prevalence of artificial surfaces in the cinch Scottish Championship will in any way hinder his bid to take the Ayrshire side back to the top flight.

The former Aberdeen boss started his reign with a 2-0 win away to Queen of the South on Saturday after replacing Tommy Wright. Goals from captain Chris Stokes and a penalty from Oli Shaw were enough to seal the win at Palmerston, one of five grounds – including that of Kilmarnock – in a 10-team division not to play on grass.

McInnes has absolutely no issues regarding which surface his side plays on, especially given that his new club trains and plays its home matches on an artificial one. The manager says his players are more than used the different pitches and expects his side to challenge for the title regardless of what the matches are played on.

"There are different challenges to win a league, different things you need to overcome,” said McInnes, “but I think the most important thing is just to concentrate on our level of performance.

“I think you've always got to try, depending on the situation… whether it's pitch conditions, or whatever, you just need to find ways to win.”

Finding ways to win more at home will is one of the areas he will address, with the side failing to win there in their last three. He gave his all from the side of the pitch at the weekend, with his advice and encouragement of the first half becoming punctuated with the odd brisk order in the second period.

The first opportunity he’ll have to do this in a home setting comes at the end of the month versus Inverness. But if McInnes’ record at Rugby Park is anything to go by he’ll have no problem in this area.

In his eight years at Aberdeen, he boasted an imperious record on the synthetic surface, travelling there 15 times and never losing at the venue.

"The [Kilmarnock] board were saying they ran us close a few times,” laughs McInnes. “Sometimes that's just the way, isn't it, with teams?

“What do remember about each and every one of them is that it was never ever easy. It was never straight-forward, so we had to find different ways to win.

"We want to be a strong home team. We're not going to win a title, there's no team that has won a title with our home record the way it is at the minute this season. That's an obvious thing we have to try and change.

“But I'm pleased with what we've had from the players so far and hopefully we go into the next game feeling a little more sure of ourselves again going into the next one to try and get another three points."

After 10 months of punditry, searching and waiting for the right offer and realising he’s still “institutionalised” to wake at the crack of dawn, even on sedentary Saturdays, McInnes saw the Ayrshire club as the perfect opportunity to reactivate his managerial career.

He joins at the perfect time to replenish his squad and it took little time for the rumours to start and McInnes confessed that he had spoken to “one or two” players ahead of his official unveiling at Rugby Park.

Whether or not any will be added by Friday when they travel again, this time to take on Partick Thistle, they instantly looked an improved outfit under the guidance of McInnes. A win in that fixture will take Killie to the summit, though the manager is careful not to get carried away after just one match.

"I think we've just to try and deal with the next game in hand and see where it take us,” he said. “We know that it's important to keep building confidence.

“Sometimes January can be an uncertain month for teams anyway because it's the time when agents are more alive and clubs are asking the question. So it's important we just really focus on our performance and if we can really focus on that then we'll give ourselves a chance to win at Firhill.”