It’s been a disappointing few weeks for St Johnstone. Three consecutive defeat to Celtic in the space of 11 days and a defeat to Hamilton has seen Tommy Wright’s men go way off the boil in recent weeks.
Sure, three games against an in-form Celtic isn’t ideal, but Saints fans would have hoped for some better performances. They are now out of the Scottish Cup, with not much to focus on in the league.
Sure they are still favourites to reach the top six, but even with that incentive, have the Saints got much to play for until the end of the season?
Top six is good for St Johnstone, but at what cost?
The Scottish Cup was most likely St Johnstone’s last proper competitive fixture of this season. A cup run is vital for the likes of the Perthshire outfit, so to fall out of that after just two games is a damaging blow. Then you move onto the league campaign, where fans know roughly where their team will finish.
It’ll be somewhere between sixth and ninth, with a place in the top six the obvious prize. It gets you the bigger games, a chance to perhaps influence the fate of where the Premiership will land. With how St Johnstone have faired recently though, is it really going to live up to that promise?
They have lost five on the bounce in all competitions, and several key players have looked off the boil. Joe Shaughnessy seems to have had his head turned by Aberdeen, with the Sun reporting the Dons are wanting their former youth player. His performances have suffered since this speculation, fueling rumours he is off to Pittodrie in the summer.
Matthew Kennedy hasn’t managed to replicate the form he showed earlier in the season, and despite his early form, Tony Watt looks like he needs to move down a level. He can’t seem to handle the demands of the top flight, having scored just once since August.
If the Saints got a top six spot, would it just be five straight defeats again? They have only picked up six points against the top six, so a gruelling last month would be horrible for Tommy Wright. Contrast this with just two defeat to teams in the bottom six all season, St Johnstone would at least see some victories their final five games.
Ultimately, the Perthshire outfit aren’t going to have a spectacular end to the season. It’ll either be a disappointing spell in the top six, or a boring last month stuck in the bottom six. Whatever the circumstances though, St Johnstone have still enjoyed a decent season.
Safety in the Premiership and decent football at times. What more can you ask for?