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Jim Goodwin sets St Mirren a top-six target after cup disappointment

Livingston v St Mirren – Betfred Cup – Semi Final – Hampden Park
(Image credit: Jane Barlow)

St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin has set out clear top-six targets for his players to ensure there is no Hampden hangover.

Saints have no time to dwell on their Betfred Cup semi-final defeat by Livingston.

The Buddies face Dundee United at Tannadice on Wednesday in a crucial game for their Scottish Premiership aspirations.

Victory would put them two points off sixth-placed United with three games in hand and give them a major platform to push for a top-half finish.

And Goodwin is not afraid to give his players that target.

“As you can imagine the boys were feeling a little bit low on Monday but I’m glad to say they are back to where we want them to be,” he said.

“That’s not to say we have forgotten about what happened because obviously we haven’t, but we can’t spend too long thinking about it because we have a massive game in the league.

“The boys are desperate to make amends and hopefully we see a positive reaction.

“The top six is our ambition. I am putting ourselves under pressure by mentioning it because it would be very easy to come on here and talk about how staying in the Premiership is what we need to do as a club.

“But I think we are beyond that now. I am not satisfied with just having that thought in our minds. We now need to see if we can get the results required to force our way into the top six.

“We have 12 games to go before the split and some of the teams around us have only got nine or 10, and I think of those 12 games we are probably going to need 17-18 points to be sure of that sixth place. I think 40-41 points will be enough.

“I think that’s what need, the minimum requirement. The players are well aware of that and we will be going into these dozen games trying to pick up the points required.”

Goodwin will be without injured midfielder Jake Doyle-Hayes and recent signing Collin Quaner.

Goodwin said: “Collin opened up his knee against St Johnstone so we could be looking at another month for Collin, which is disappointing because we brought him in to help us make that push and I think he would have been a big player for us.

“But hopefully he will heal a little bit quicker than anticipated and we can get him back in the team.”