ST MIRREN manager Gary Teale says he will take the responsibility for motivating his struggling team – even though he says he should not have to.
The Paisley club look a lost cause, ten points adrift at the bottom of the Scottish Premiership with just five games left.
The relegation-bound side have slumped to seven defeats from their last eight games, while they have now played 437 minutes of top-flight action without finding the net. Morale could not be lower but Teale insists his players should not need any hand-holding as they try to raise themselves for tomorrow’s home fixture with Kilmarnock.
He said: “The only thing we need to motivate them is to remind the guys this is their job and they get paid very well to do it. The fans pay their money to come along and see something on the pitch, so at the end of the day self pride should be the biggest motivating factor.
“I read a quote from Bill Shankly from back in his Liverpool days. Somebody asked him the same question, ‘How do you motivate players?’ He lost the rag a wee bit and said: ‘How do I motivate players? They get paid very well and have a duty to perform’.
“He said he’d put them in jail if they couldn’t motivate themselves to go out and perform in front of the fans. That’s not a bad idea. But I totally understand it’s up to me to get the players up for this game on Saturday. I just try to make it as lively and upbeat as I can and hope that takes some of the pressure away from the boys.”
Teale will have to ring the changes for Killie’s visit.
Centre-halves Jim Goodwin and Viktor Genev are both suspended, while defender Marc McAusland, midfielder Isaac Osbourne and striker Callum Ball have all quit the club a month early after their contracts were mutually terminated.