Saint’s Murray Davidson prefers Euro chase to fighting drop

Murray Davidson celebrates after scoring.  Picture Ian Rutherford
Murray Davidson celebrates after scoring. Picture Ian Rutherford
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St Johnstone’s Murray 
Davidson will enjoy the battle for a European spot safe from the more intense pressure of fighting for Premiership 
survival.

The Perth club clinched a top-six spot for the sixth 
successive season two weeks ago, despite a 1-0 defeat at Hamilton.

Tommy Wright’s side are in fourth place, five points ahead of Hearts, and are hopeful of a Europa League spot next 
season as they prepare to meet Aberdeen at McDiarmid Park today.

The Saints midfielder, who should recover from a back complaint in time to face the Dons, compared favourably the quest to finish in a European place with the 
bottom-six dog fight to avoid the drop.

The 29-year-old said: “There is pressure no matter where you are in the league. But you would much rather be under the pressure we are under, trying to finish fourth, than probably six other teams who are fighting to stay out of the 
bottom two places.It is a good pressure. You have to thrive on it, you have to enjoy it.

“We have been lucky enough, because for four or five 
seasons we have been in Europe. It is a good experience and it is something that we want to go and do again.

“It is in our own hands. In the last six games we have got to go and get a decent points return and hopefully that will be enough.”

Second-placed Aberdeen were stunned by a 3-0 home defeat to chasing Rangers last Sunday.

Derek McInnes’ side had the better of the second half until they were hit by three goals in five minutes. Davidson said: “I thought in the second half that it was a matter of time before Aberdeen scored.

“I thought they were a lot better, they played at a better tempo and then Rangers scored and of course they scored three in four minutes or so.

“So it was a very strange game, but it is a different game this week. They will be looking at coming down and getting a positive result and we know we are going to have to be at it to get a result, because they are a very good team.”