Steve Clarke walked into a mess at Rugby Park. It’s incredible that he has managed to turn this Kilmarnock side from basement dwellers, to table toppers.
When he first walked through the door last year, Clarke’s main priority was to steer the team from the foot of the table, to a safe position in the Premiership. Now it’s December the following year, and no one would be surprised, if Kilmarnock finished in the top three this season.
These are halcyon days for the Ayrshire outfit. A harsh lesson from Celtic last weekend couldn’t derail Killie, as they stormed back to form, with an impressive 3-1 victory over Dundee on Saturday. His influence has been astounding, and it’s hard to think where Killie would be without the former West Brom coach.
Clarke has resillence and strength in abundance
In Clarke’s first game he managed to get a point at Ibrox. It was a hard fought scrap, and this was a sign of things to come. They netted late on, having been put under pressure the full match.
The squad have showed incredible strength, and proven theycan overcome most obstacles that are in front of them. They have amassed 14 points from losing positions this season, which is a great record for Clarke’s men.
They notably came from behind to topple Celtic earlier this season, with a last gasp Stuart Findlay header securing a vital victory. It shows that no matter the circumstances, Killie will always find a way to succeed. Clarke seems to have installed the motive, that if you play to your full potential for 90 minutes, you’ll get the full reward.
The 49-year old has excelled in every aspect of management during his tenure in Ayrshire. He is now getting the best out of players who looked beleaguered before his arrival. He has made key signings that have helped take this Killie side to a new level. They are now extremely versatile, and can deal with pretty much any situation they are in.
There is a buzz around Rugby Park, which hasn’t been seen in a number of years. Clarke often takes no credit for his part in the Killie revival, but without him, there wouldn’t have been one.