St MIRREN caretaker Gary Teale will go into their New Year’s Day clash with Kilmarnock buoyed by their long overdue win over Dundee at the weekend.The Buddies chalked up their first victory since October after triumphing 3-1 at Dens Park and, in doing so, ended a ten-game run without a win.
Teale, who has thrown his hat in the ring again as he aspires to permanently replace former manager Tommy Craig at the helm, believes they can go into the Killie clash and 2015 with renewed hope thanks to their powerful display at Dens Park.
Teale said: “This should give the lads a great lift. It’s all about moving on now. The next game is always the most important and for us now that is Kilmarnock on Thursday. I can’t ask for any more from the players because their effort and commitment is magnificent and I see that in training every day.
“It’s something I want to keep developing and take onto the park in every game.”
He added: “There are no easy games, especially when you’re in the position we’re in, but we should be confident ahead of Thursday.
“We’ll go back into training again on Monday and start preparing as professionally as possible, as we always do.” Kenny McLean’s first-half strike and Stephen Mallan’s first-ever goal for the club in the 68th minute put the Buddies on the way to a welcome three points..
Dundee had defender Paul McGinn red-carded after 78 minutes for his last-man foul on McLean, allowing the Paisley midfielder to slot home the resulting penalty kick.
Gary Irvine pulled back a late consolation for the home team in the 84th minute.
But Dundee were never at the races, which is something manager Paul Hartley is vowing to put right ahead of their New Year’s Day meeting with Dundee United at Tannadice.
Hartley said: “It was one of those days. Now we have to address where we went wrong.
“We don’t want a repeat of that against Dundee United on Thursday.
“So we’ll go over things on Monday and get back down to the hard work again.
“The players have trained so well all week that it’s difficult to put your finger on why this happened.
“But the good thing is we’ve got a big game coming up to make amends.”