Home   Sport   Article

CHARLIE CHRISTIE: Next boss has big challenge to march St Johnstone on

By Charlie Christie

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!

The Scottish Premier League saw its first managerial casualty of the season this week as St Johnstone parted ways with Steven MacLean after their 4-0 drubbing at the hands of high-flying St Mirren.

MacLean was hugely hard hitting after the match saying that several of his players should be ashamed of their performances which left them detached at the bottom of the league with just four points and no wins from their opening nine games. It was perhaps these comments that triggered the actions of the Saints board, and they now begin the search for their next boss.

It’s been a steady decline for the McDiarmid Park side since those heady days in May 2021 when a Shaun Rooney goal at Hampden saw them complete a quite unbelievable cup double as they added the Scottish Cup to the League Cup.

They finished that season in fifth place in the table qualifying them for the Europa League and rounding off a quite incredible season.

The following season saw the start of their decline as they only just retained top division status by defeating Inverness Caley Thistle in the play-off final although the 6-2 aggregate score flattered the Perth side as ICT caused them real problems over the two legs.

They followed that up with an unconvincing campaign last term and a large turnover of playing staff during the close season left them going into this season with an imbalanced squad who have found the going tough so far. Whoever the new manager turns out to be he has a significant challenge on his hands to turn their fortunes around.

Whilst St Johnstone toiled in Paisley last Saturday one of Perth’s smaller clubs enjoyed historic success when Jeanfield Swifts from the East of Scotland league thrashed Scottish League Two’s Elgin City 6-0. It was a quite awful result for the former Highland league side who, themselves, had a proud history in the Scottish Cup as a non-league side.

The match as a contest was over before the half hour mark with Swifts four goals to the good and the result is one of the worst ever upsets in Scottish Cup history involving a non-league club playing league opposition.

Jeanfield will be joined by three Highland league clubs in the third round.

Brora will be delighted to have home advantage as they welcome West of Scotland League side Pollok and should be favourites to progress. Buckie face a tough trip to Broxburn, another East of Scotland side, but it is a match they are certainly capable of winning.

Formartine were dealt the toughest draw, and it would be a real upset if they defeated League One table toppers Falkirk who are undefeated in 11 games.

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More