St Johnstone’s form throughout the campaign is perfectly reflected by their league position. Mid table, chasing a place in the top six, they’re currently in a rut.
With just one point collected in their last eight league matches, the Saints are on their worst run of league form in a single season since 1984-85. So, what’s happened?
You can immediately point your finger at the tricky fixture list. Saints haven’t won since the 23rd January in their 1-0 victory over Livingston in Perth. Ironic that their poor form is highlighted having played the reverse fixture in West Lothian, losing 3-1.
Since then, they lost away at Hearts before playing Celtic twice in just four days. Three consecutive 2-0 losses began in the capital. Their loss to Hamilton is a fixture they’d have hoped for better and they were then eliminated from the Scottish Cup by Celtic with a crushing 5-0 defeat.
Ironically, their point in this run came in one of their trickiest fixtures. Yet their stalemate at Ibrox was prior to consecutive home defeats to Europe-chasing Aberdeen and fellow top six hopefuls Hibs. Their loss to Livingston was the final straw before they host struggling St Mirren at the weekend.
Lack of goals
Up front, they seem to struggle. In their last eight, they average a goal every 0.38 games. A very worrying statistic indeed.
Tony Watt has the same amount of league goals as central defender Joe Shaughnessy (three) and their top scorer is Matty Kennedy with five.
Having missed a glorious opportunity at the weekend at 2-1 down, Watt even felt the need to apologise to his teammates. Exactly 29 goals in 29 games is far from good enough if Saints have top six aspirations.
Uncharacteristically conceding a few too
At the other end, their goals conceded has leapt up by 40%. Usually, it’s an average of 1.34 conceded per game. However, in the last eight, it’s a concerning 1.88. It must be remembered though, it’s easy to not look too much into that given the quality of the opposition they’ve played.
Their game at home to bottom of the league St Mirren is next to give them the perfect platform to correct their current predicament. It’s essential they do so before facing Motherwell in a match that could well decide a top six spot.