Next up - St Johnstone

Last updated : 26 January 2012 By Firparkcorner

It is likely that the bookies will have us favourites for the clash but we all know this will be a tough encounter.  Tuesday's win returns some symmetry to our home record but St Johnstone's form away from home is nothing short of exceptional.  They have conceded a mere seven goals on their travels while scoring 16 to claim six wins from 11 and 22 points out of 33 available.  Whisper it, but a draw would probably not be an unwelcome result for us this weekend.

That said, it is hard to apply logic like that when playing at home even when the numbers add up against us.  Should we win we will move six points clear of St Johnstone and the same amount clear of Hearts with all three European contenders having played the same number of games – in short, we would be firmly established as favourites for a top four finish despite our blip/collapse over Christmas.

We are still missing Saunders and Hollis from the squad but Craigan is banned and we will have to take the field without Higdon.  His laughable one-game ban has been confirmed depite common sense suggesting it should succeed.  However, common sense and Scottish football rarely go hand in hand...

Without our number 9, McHugh could come in as a direct replacement or Murphy could move up front with Humphrey taking over a wide berth.  Humphrey and Law will both hope to build on mid-week goals after some flat performances recently.  Ojamaa must be in the starting line up.

In stark contrast to when we thrashed them 3-0 in December, St Johnstone have nearly everyone fit and available for this clash.  The impact of Morris in the midfield and Sandaza up front is considerable so they will be confident of extending their recent strong run.  They may be aware that their own dismal home record means this is a game they really should be looking to win though and hopefully that can work in our favour – after an end to end encounter, we may just come out on top, 2-1.