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Last season St Mirren delivered largely positive results, including their highest finish in over a decade. Despite having the squad with the second-lowest market value in the League, the Saints finished 7th in the Premiership and reached the semi-final in both cups. As a result, going into the new season, the club seems hopeful as the board did not sit back and provided their Irish coach, Jim Goodwin, with some valuable reinforcements that can lead them to a top-six finish.

Since St Mirren returned to the Premiership in 2018, following their victorious run in the Championship, they have very much been on an upward trajectory. In their first year, they barely escaped relegation, winning on penalties against Dundee United in the May Premiership play-off final. However, committed to improving their game, they returned the following year and, although they played eight games fewer when compared to the previous year, they improved their numbers. They finished in 9th place, conceded 20 goals fewer and Jonathan Obika, the team’s top goalscorer, scored 8 goals, two more than Simeon Jackson, who held the title in 2019.

Going into the 2020/21 Premiership, St Mirren improved even further. They finished 7th in the league, winning the same number of points as St Johnstone, who qualified for the Europa League third qualifying round, and Livingston who also made it to the top six. In addition, St Mirren had the fifth-best defence in the 20/21 Premiership, conceding only 45 goals in 38 games. While the defence gave the team some leverage and propelled them forward, the attack left a lot to be desired with just 37 goals scored and the sixth-worst record in the championship. In fact, this same lack of goals has also been holding back the team already this season.

A New Season

Nonetheless, in their strategy for the 2021/22 season, the club approached the transfer window intending to fill the gaps in the attack and take the club’s performance one step further: reach the top six, present a more balanced and consistent team for the league, and also mount another deep run in the cups. However, for now, with 13 games played, St Mirren sit below the top six and according to outright Scottish Premiership football betting odds they aren’t quite favoured for the top six with odds of 3/1 to reach it.

Taking advantage of Kilmarnock’s relegation to the Championship, the Saints signed three of their players: midfielder Alan Power (33), left-winger Greg Kiltie (24) and centre forward Eamonn Brophy (25). Additionally, forward Curtis Main (29) from Shrewsbury Town was brought in to help the attack. At the back, the left side was a priority with two interesting additions to the squad: Charles Dunne (28), ex-Motherwell, and Scott Tanser (26), ex St. Johnstone. Even on a limited budget, this year’s squad presents a wider range of options and a more skilled set of players, which is more than enough to expect good prospects for the Saints’ season, as the new reinforcements are already proving valuable additions to the squad.

This new wave of enthusiasm is also a result of the recent five-year struggle for St Mirren to become a fan-owned club coming to an end earlier this year. This unique model in the top tiers of European football sees the club being owned by fans and run in partnership with a charity. This model allows roughly 1200 members to financially contribute to different areas of the club and different charities in local communities.

For now, the Saints have been struggling to find their feet in the top half of the table. In fact, they failed to win any of their six opening games and have only won three matches all season. However, if we’ve learned anything from last season is that if that team can push past the bad results of the first half of the competition, there is still a good chance they can make it to the top half of the table.