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St Mirren captain fighting on two fronts during the run in

Jim Goodwin acknowledged it is a "nervy time" to be around St Mirren.

It was made all the more unsettling yesterday when the club's captain announced sternly that he is ready to "fight" for a new contract at the club, the instinctive response being to edge away slowly and try not to make eye contact. It is a practice which might be replicated this afternoon by the more squeamish players within the Inverness Caledonian Thistle squad.

It was a reaction to the reputation that Goodwin has for being one of the more physical players in the SPFL Premiership. That is the perception with which supporters are often beaten over the head with, although that is admittedly not an appropriate analogy given that Goodwin was accused of elbowing an opponent in his napper earlier this season.

Goodwin is determined to give Danny Lennon a headache, too, since the St Mirren manager has yet to discuss new deals with some of his players - Goodwin just one of those whose current contracts end this summer. Marian Kello, Chris Dilo, Paul McGowan, Darren McGregor and David van Zanten also awaiting news on their futures in Paisley.

Uncertainty over St Mirren's place in the top flight - they arrive in the Highlands occupying the relegation play-off place - the club's ownership and the future of its manager have likely contributed to that. However, that is of little comfort to Goodwin as he serves out the final weeks of his current contract.

"My contract is up on May 30 but with the way things are with the team, the club haven't approached anyone," said the midfielder. "Myself and others are desperate to find out what is happening. It is a nervy time for us all.

"The club can't make any commitment to any players until they find out what league they are in next season, which is fair enough. You are always fighting for the next contract so hopefully we can ensure our Premiership status for next season. I would love to be here next year. I have had a fantastic time here."

There are players in Inverness too who have had cause to think about their immediate futures. One of them is Ryan Christie, a young player who has been tipped to feature regularly in the first-team squad between now and the end of the season. It will be a source of pride for the teenager given that his father, Charlie, is a club great who player for Inverness 314 times.

"Everyone knows what my dad achieved as a player at the club," said Christie. "He has given me a lot of good direction over the years and has been hard on me when he needed to be. I think I've probably needed that."

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