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Jim Goodwin keen for St Mirren appeal to be resolved

St Mirren v Celtic – Scottish Premiership – Simple Digital Arena
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin hopes to finally learn the fate of the Buddies’ appeal against the decision to award them two 3-0 defeats for breaching Covid regulations next week.

The Paisley outfit were forced to cancel their October clashes with Motherwell and Hamilton after a coronavirus outbreak left boss Goodwin unable to name a team.

Saints chiefs hoped the two matches would be replayed, but instead a Hampden disciplinary panel decided to hand their opponents walk-over victories, while also issuing a suspended £40,000 fine.

That infuriated the Paisley outfit, who announced earlier this month they would be challenging the SPFL ruling.

However, Goodwin admits he still has no idea how the appeal is progressing.

And the Irishman – who now has a Betfred Cup semi-final against Livingston to squeeze into his side’s busy schedule following Wednesday’s shock win over Rangers – is concerned Saints will be left with a fixture pile up if the outcome is delayed any further.

“I would expect there to be a decision next week – I’d like to think so,” said Goodwin. “We’re running out of possible fixtures dates to replay both those games so I would like to think the appeal will have been decided next week by some point.

“I asked our chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick this morning if we’d had any feedback on that and there’s been nothing back yet.

“Hopefully we get the opportunity to play Motherwell and Hamilton and give ourselves the chance to play for those six points as they could be massive come the end of the season.

“It could be the difference between reaching the top six or finishing ninth or 10th.

“We can’t afford to be giving those points away to teams that we are competing with. Take those six points off Motherwell and all of a sudden they are right down there with us.

“We need to hope for a fair outcome and hope we can get the opportunity to play for those points on the park.

“My stance is that we should be given the opportunity to play those games. I think if those rules and regulations were put in place before the season had started then we could all accept it.

“But we can’t create penalties as the season is on-going. That’s as much as I can say without getting myself in trouble with the board and the chief executive.”

Saints became the first team in nine months to halt Steven Gerrard’s Ibrox juggernaut as they stunner Gers with a 3-2 win at the SMISA Stadium.

That victory leaves Goodwin’s team just 90 minutes away from a place in the final, with the manager dreaming of replicating the 2013 League Cup triumph he achieved as skipper.

But before that St Mirren host St Johnstone knowing a first defeat in 11 games would leave them at risk of dropping back into the relegation zone.

He said: “We’re back down to earth now as we’ve got a huge game to focus on.

“We did speak about it this morning. It’s very difficult to sleep after night games anyway – but to have the kind of result we did on Wednesday, then the adrenalin was pumping through the veins into the early hours.

“So the majority of us didn’t get a great night’s sleep.

“And it can be difficult to get the lads picked back up when you’ve had a high like that

“But we have to do it, it’s a simple as that. We’re on a very good run at the moment, 10 games unbeaten.

“But you’re right to point out that all of the excitement and the goodwill that has been coming our way after Wednesday’s result will soon be forgotten if we get turned over tomorrow by St Johnstone.

“We want to get into the habit of going far in cup competitions but the league remains our bread and butter and the importance of Saturday’s game is huge.”