A win tonight for KILMARNOCK against ST MIRREN will virtually assure the Ayrshire side of top six participation after the split. A hard-earned away victory over Ross County on Saturday has left them in pole position to do so. Should they fail to win this game in hand that they are playing tonight, they will get a second bite of the cherry with another home tie against doomed Dundee at the weekend.
Manager Kenny Shiels, however, will surely want the job done and dusted tonight. It was good news and bad news for the Killie coach this week; the bad news being that the much-lauded James Dayton will be out for the rest of the season after breaking four ribs on Saturday. On a brighter note, Shiels has signed the 22-year-old Nigerian midfielder Reuben Gabriel. For tonight’s game, Paul Heffernan may be doubtful. Shiels acknowledges that St Mirren present a serious threat, believing that they have a ‘top four squad’ with ‘quality players’.
St Mirren played well on Sunday and arguably merited their 1-1 draw with Celtic. They have no new injuries and must go into this game with some degree of both confidence and relaxation. Although consigned to the bottom six, Danny Lennon wants to gain as many points as possible and to improve on their position of eighth from last season. The Buddies have failed to beat Killie in their two previous SPL meetings this season, having lost 3-1 at tonight’s venue and drawn 1-1 at Paisley. It would be painful for Kilmarnock if St Mirren were to turn the tables tonight!
Prediction: Kilmarnock to win.