16 May 2023

St Johnstone boss Steven MacLean backing his ‘experienced pros’ to keep them up

16 May 2023

Steven MacLean is confident he has enough big characters to help lead St Johnstone to cinch Premiership safety.

The Perth side are ninth in the table, just three points clear of Ross County who occupy the relegation play-off place.

Defeat away to 10th-placed Kilmarnock this weekend could see Saints slip to second bottom, but interim manager MacLean is buoyed by the make-up of his squad as he bids to push them over the line to safety.

“I look at my dressing-room and I see Liam Gordon, Andy Considine, Cammy MacPherson, Ryan McGowan, Graham Carey and Stevie May, good experienced pros who know what it’s about,” he said.

“They know when the chips are down and they’ll roll their sleeves up. They’ll run the dressing-room. I know I’ve got players in there who are going to come out fighting and that’s what we need.

“We’ve got other players as well but those ones I’ve just mentioned know what it’s all about, so I’m confident about going to Kilmarnock. We want to get this done as soon as possible so we’ll be going to win the game.”

Saints have won just one of their last nine matches, but MacLean – who has overseen three games since the sacking of Callum Davidson last month – is maintaining a positive mindset.

“You say it like that (one win in nine), I’ll say it’s one defeat in three so morale’s fine,” he said. “The dressing-room’s good, I’m good, we’re positive.

“We’re positive people and we’re going to Kilmarnock to get three points. We’re in the driving seat. We’re ahead of Ross County, Kilmarnock and Dundee United so it’s about what we do.

“We can control our performance and then hopefully results will follow.”

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox