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Tommy Wright looks on the positive side as Kilmarnock continue relegation battle

Rangers v Kilmarnock – Scottish Premiership – Ibrox Stadium
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Kilmarnock manager Tommy Wright has been accentuating the positives as his side look to end a club-record run of eight consecutive defeats.

Killie have gone down 1-0 against Motherwell, Rangers and Aberdeen since Wright took over but there have been signs of encouragement in their approach play.

Former Rangers striker Kyle Lafferty made his debut off the bench last weekend while influential midfielder Alan Power is back from suspension for Saturday’s visit of Dundee United.

Killie dropped into the bottom two last weekend and they have only scored in one of their last eight games so finding a cutting edge has been a key aspect of Wright’s first weeks in the job.

“We have tried to be positive,” he said. “Our approach play has been very good but it’s been the final ball and decision-making that’s really cost us.

“Everything we have been doing is trying to be as positive as possible and get into those areas where we can hurt teams, but then making sure we are a bit more clinical. That’s been the main focus in training this week.”

The former St Johnstone boss added: “We are not in a false position because we haven’t played well enough over 30 games. That’s the harsh reality.

“But you have to look forward to the next game and that has always been my mantra, to make sure the focus is on the next game and get the positivity that you have to show to win that next game. That’s what we have tried to do since we came in.

“Work hard, try and learn from the mistakes we have made, but you have to be positive.

“There’s enough games left, enough points to be won, enough quality in the squad to put a run together, but it has to happen.

“Players have to make sure they take on board what we work on and then the responsibility is to play to the maximum of their ability.”

Killie sold Stuart Findlay to Philadelphia Union this week rather than lose him for nothing in the summer but the centre-back had missed recent games through injury anyway.

And Wright received relatively good news after another central defender, Clevid Dikamona, went off with a hamstring injury at Pittodrie last weekend which proved less serious than first feared.

“We don’t think it’s serious but he will miss this week,” Wright said. “I am expecting him to return to training in another five to 10 days. That’s the only injury we have got.”