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David Martindale wants his players to put Hampden hurt behind them quickly

Livingston v St Johnstone – Betfred Cup – Final – Hampden Park
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Livingston manager David Martindale has urged his players to use their Hampden pain to propel them forward.

Martindale was already beginning the process of moving on from their Betfred Cup final disappointment on the pitch of the national stadium.

The 46-year-old will learn lessons from Sunday’s defeat by St Johnstone but he vowed to put it behind him quickly.

There is an immediate chance to do that on Wednesday when Livi host Scottish Premiership leaders Rangers, who are only seven points away from clinching the title.

But Livi have their own target to achieve as they look to secure a top-six place.

They have a five-point cushion on seventh-placed Dundee United with two games in hand and Martindale wants to focus on removing any doubt about their post-split destiny.

“We can’t dwell on it, we have to look forward to Wednesday night now,” he said. “As much as it hurts just now, we have got to use that as fuel going forward.

“If you can’t take that on the chin, if you can’t self-reflect, if you can’t use that as motivation going forward, I don’t think you should be in Premiership football.

“I will definitely do that. We need to use it as fuel to kick on and try to secure top six as early as possible.

“We started on that process on the park. The quicker we get it out of the system the better. We can’t let that overhang and affect the rest of the season. It can’t define the rest of the season.

“I will look at the game back and see what I could have done better: did I pick the wrong formation? Did I pick the wrong players in the formation? I will self-reflect because it’s the only way you are going to improve.

“I have been through bigger disappointments in life than this and I will definitely get through this one.”