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Callum Davidson says underdog status will motivate St Johnstone against Celtic

Callum Davidson file photo
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Callum Davidson says St Johnstone will use the fact they are not expected to take anything from Saturday’s clash with leaders Celtic as motivation when they visit Parkhead.

The Perth side have lost all three of their encounters with the Hoops so far this season – both league games and November’s Premier Sports Cup semi-final clash – despite solid performances from Davidson’s side on each occasion.

But St Johnstone go into this cinch Premiership meeting full of confidence, having pulled themselves six points clear of rock-bottom Dundee with a draw and two victories in their last three games.

And although he is well aware of the size of the task his 11th-placed side face at Celtic Park, Davidson is hoping to make life difficult for the hosts.

Davidson said: “It’s always a tough place to go. I think Celtic and Rangers on their home patch are really difficult places to play.

“We performed quite well there at the start of the season, in the cup game as well, and performed quite well at home – obviously that was right at the end of December, a difficult period for us.

“We know what we need to do – it’s going to be really difficult. They’ve got a lot of players back fit.

“They’ve had obviously a really important game for them last week (the 2-1 derby win at Rangers).

“They’ll be looking to win the game but really it’s (about) what we do. Can we frustrate them? Can we make it difficult?

“There’s pressure on them as well as us, pressure on both teams, but different types.

“I think nobody expects us to get anything so I think that’s probably our motivation.

“Can we get something out of the game that would affect other teams and help us a little bit?

“You see when teams play the Old Firm, you kind of expect them to lose and drop all the points. It’s really important we can go there and put a performance in.

“I think we need to pass the ball a lot better than we have done.

“I think our determination and organisation have been really good. But on the flip side, once we win it back at Parkhead we need to be really good on the ball. Need to try to put Celtic under a little bit more pressure. Need to ask them questions.

“If you keep them quiet for 20/30 minutes, you’ve always got a chance and that’s what we’ll have to do on Saturday.”

St Johnstone have suffered an injury blow with the news that full-back Tony Gallacher fractured a bone in his leg in last weekend’s win over Livingston, ruling him out for the rest of the season.

Davidson said: “It’s a shame for him because I think he’s starting to perform really well. His confidence was getting better and better – he’s a young lad.

“Hopefully we’ll get a speedy recovery from him, and he’ll be back in next season pushing for a starting jersey.”

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