St MIRREN midfielder Conor Newton claims the club’s early end to their defence of the Scottish League Cup has left the Paisley men fuming. But the on-loan Newcastle youth has warned Partick Thistle that the Buddies are ready to take their anger out on them this Saturday.
Saints won the trophy for the first time in their history last March but their reign as holders was cut short when they lost to Queen of the South at Palmerston on Tuesday. The 2-1 defeat after extra time has heaped more pressure on manager Danny Lennon following their failure to win any of their three Scottish Premiership fixtures so far this term.
But Newton – who scored the winning goal in the 3-2 Hampden final win over Hearts – claims the frustration felt by the players is ready to boil over and Partick will feel the full brunt. He said: “To work so hard last year to win the cup but then go out after the first game of our defence is gutting. There was a lot of glum faces in the dressing room after. I’m devastated.
“Ask any footballer, they will not have a smile on their face after they get knocked out of the cup. I’m angry for myself, I’m angry because we have let the supporters down. They paid a lot of money to get down to Dumfries and what they got wasn’t good enough.
“There are angry faces in the dressing room, but that’s what character is. We will use that anger to bounce back against Partick on Saturday.”
Lennon’s side have won just once in the six months since lifting the League Cup but Newton defended the manager and claimed it is up to the players to turn results around. “There was a lot of uncomfortable words said by the manager in the dressing room at Palmerston but to an extent there is only so much that he can say,” he claimed.
“It is up to us as players to go out on the pitch and get results and grind out victories. At the minute we’re just not doing so.
“Why? I’m not sure. I’m watching the lads playing football and the performances we are putting in should potentially bring us results.
“We went down there hoping to kick-start our season. We wanted to get a good result and put a few past them. Maybe if we can get a result against Partick on Saturday it won’t be too bad.”
Administration-hit Hearts were favourites to be relegated at the start of the new term following their 15-point fine for breaching insolvency rules.
But Hearts have already picked up two wins and a draw to leave themselves just nine behind St Mirren.
“The lads are not thinking about Hearts,” insisted Newton.
“We just need to go out and grind out results and look after ourselves.”