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Richard Tait believes St Mirren are in a good place

St Mirren v Heart of Midlothian – cinch Premiership – The SMiSA Stadium
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Richard Tait feels familiarity can be an advantage for St Mirren as they bid to reach the Premier Sports Cup quarter-finals.

Saints have kept the nucleus of the team that reached the semi-finals last season along with the last four of the Scottish Cup and the new faces are also well known to Tait.

The full-back’s former Motherwell team-mates Charles Dunne and Curtis Main have been among the new arrivals and Alan Power is also an old colleague, while ex-St Johnstone full-back Scott Tanser is well-versed with Scottish football.

Manager Jim Goodwin looks to have strengthened again as he seeks further improvement and Tait is excited about their prospects ahead of the second-round tie at Livingston.

“The new boys have all settled in really well,” the 31-year-old said. “Tans has done really well at left wing-back, his deliveries have been fantastic, and I think him and Dunney are really striking up a good partnership on that side.

“Obviously Maino I know from Motherwell and I know Al from a long time ago when we were at Forest together. It’s actually nice to have some new faces in the team but some familiar faces at the same time.

“Most clubs in the league, especially clubs like ourselves, probably struggle to hold on to the players that have had a really good season, and at the minute we have managed to do that, and the manager wants to keep the core of the team together.

“It really does help when you are not starting again from scratch. Instead of getting 11 new players coming in and trying to gel, you have a few coming in and I think they have settled in really well.”

Livingston beat Saints at Hampden in this tournament last season and Tait is keen to get back to that stage.

“We did well last season in the cups and we are looking to go one step further,” he said.

“We have probably got the hardest draw in the seeded section, so it should be a good game.”

Goodwin will be without the suspended Kristian Dennis and Power but Saints otherwise have a full squad.