Saints’ Michael O’Halloran reveals goal demand

St Johnstone's Michael O'Halloran, centre. Picture: SNS

St Johnstone's Michael O'Halloran, centre. Picture: SNS

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ST Johnstone striker Michael O’Halloran has revealed boss Tommy Wright has ordered him to hit double figures this term.

The Perth frontman netted for the third game running with his winner against struggling St Mirren as he took his goal tally to six for the season.

It was a goal which heaped yet more pressure on Buddies boss Tommy Craig’s shoulders.

But O’Halloran knows he is one step closer to getting McDiarmid manager Wright off his back.

He said: “The gaffer set me the target of 10 goals this season, so I’m more than getting there and if the goals keep going in I’ll be chapping on his door for a pay rise.”

Clear-cut scoring opportunities were few and far between in Paisley but O’Halloran made the most of his as he buried his eighth-minute winner.

The former Scotland Under 21 striker felt that his team merited the three points, taking advantage of the early lead and defending well for long periods in the game.

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“It was definitely a great start for us, once the game settled in the second half I felt it was quite an entertaining game. Credit does have to go to Alan Mannus in goal, he pulled off some excellent saves to keep us in the lead and with players like James McFadden in our ranks, we always know that the chances are going to come, we just had to take them.”

But defeat leaves St Miren mired in relegation trouble.

They sit level with Ross County at the foot of the table as their wait for a first home win of the campaign goes on.

But Craig praised his players’ performance as they now gear up for next week’s trip to Celtic Park.

“I can base my whole week on what the players gave me on Saturday,” he said. “”Not one shirked out, not one player did not want the ball and to that end, I was pleased.”

The manager also played down worries that skipper Steven Thompson had suffered a repeat of the groin injury which kept him out for almost three months.

The 36-year-old started three games in a week on his return to the side but lasted just 45 minutes against St Johnstone before being replaced at the break.

Craig said: “It was fatigue more than anything else. It was always going to be a bit of a gamble playing him three times in a week. It had crossed my mind about whether I should have played him at Inverness in midweek.

“I hummed and hawed about it then had a word with him and decided to go for it.

“But he was just showing signs of tiredness so we decided to take him off.”

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