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Ex-Ireland international urges his St Mirren side to bounce back after missing out on top six

Seventh is now the highest Jim Goodwin and his Irish contingent at St Mirren can finish this season.

Jim Goodwin (file pic).
Jim Goodwin (file pic).
Image: PA

ST MIRREN MANAGER Jim Goodwin has challenged his players to clinch seventh place in the Scottish Premiership after missing out on a spot in the top six in agonising fashion.

The concession of a last-minute goal to Hamilton’s Kyle Munro, combined with St Johnstone’s win over Ross County, saw the Paisley side fall two goals short of a place in the top half of the table for the post-split fixtures.

Seventh is now the highest St Mirren can finish this season and former Irish international Goodwin wants his players to recover from this setback to end the campaign strongly.

He said: “It’s a real sore one for us missing out on the top six. We’re now battling it out for that seventh place and that’s got to be the mindset now.

“It will take a couple of days to get over this no doubt, having come close to doing it. But we’ll have Sunday and Monday off to get a few days away from each other.

“Then we’ll come back in, dust ourselves down and try to finish seventh. That would still be a good achievement although not what we set out to do.

“We’re back at Hamilton in a couple of weeks’ time so hopefully we can go on a good Scottish Cup run as well.”

Goodwin blamed referee Don Robertson for yesterday’s costly 1-1 draw, saying his decision to award Hamilton a free-kick late in the game after Joe Shaughnessy — one of many Irish players in the side — had tangled with David Moyo ultimately cost his team.

From the resultant free kick, Kyle Munro headed the home side level, cancelling out Jamie McGrath’s first-half penalty.

Goodwin was sent off after the final whistle for arguing about the decision and he explained afterwards: “I got booked for disagreeing with the initial foul and then sent off at the end because I disagreed with the decision.

“There was no bad language or anything. It was purely just a case of I think the referee has cost us today.

“I think he’s cost us a top-six place and far too many times we find ourselves sitting here talking about the standard of refereeing.

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“It’s disappointing because I don’t like talking about officials and people will be listening to me thinking that it’s sour grapes on my part.

“It’s not. At the end of the day, in my opinion having played centre half myself that is not a free-kick.

“We’re speaking about referees far too often after games unfortunately. And Don has cost us there today.”

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