Stevie May should ‘stay put’ at St Johnstone

Stevie May (centre) celebrates his goal against ICT with Nigel Hasselbaink (left) and Dave Mackay. Picture: SNS
Stevie May (centre) celebrates his goal against ICT with Nigel Hasselbaink (left) and Dave Mackay. Picture: SNS
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ST JOHNSTONE skipper Dave Mackay believes prolific striker Stevie May should continue his education at McDiarmid Park rather than dash south.

May, who is set for his first Scotland Under-21 start in games looming with Slovakia and Georgia, took his tally for the season to seven in the 4-0 thrashing of Inverness Caledonian Thistle, while his Europa League form and previous goals tally with Hamilton and Alloa on loan attracted interest from League One club Peterborough recently.

But with contract talks continuing with the Perth club, Mackay believes May should serve out his apprenticeship under mentor Steven MacLean.

He said: “They have a good partnership and I’m sure it will only get better. Stevie May’s a goalscorer but he laid on goals on Saturday as well.

“He’ll be the first to admit that he’s not the finished article and there is more to add to his game. His link-up play and hold-up play can get better – and it will get better.

“He’s a young boy and once that starts to improve even more we’ll have a real player on our hands. He couldn’t ask for a better mentor than Steven MacLean. His [MacLean’s] link-up play is outstanding. They complement each other well and that can only be good for the team in the long run.”

Mackay admitted the win over Inverness was perfectly timed as the current squad rubbed shoulders with Saints legends at a Hall of Fame dinner, where Joe Carr, Henry Hall, Willie Coburn, John Brogan and Roddy Grant were honoured.

“The last thing we wanted was to go to the Hall of Fame dinner on the back of a defeat, because it was a big night for the club,” he said. “Now we’ve closed the gap on a few teams. If we had lost to Inverness, you were talking about a 13-point gap, which is a long way back. That win closes everything up and will make for an exciting league.”