Daniel Armstrong has three promotions to his name as a player.  

The winger, 25, has experienced the joys of moving up divisions with Ross County, Raith Rovers and of course, Kilmarnock. 

With the triumph of those achievements also came pressures. The need to win every week in order to finish top of the league and win a Championship or League One title. 

This season, Killie find themselves under massive pressure to retain their Premiership status. Derek McInnes’ men go into today’s fixture with St Johnstone sitting in the relegation play-off spot, just three points ahead of Dundee United at the foot of the table. 

While pressure is part and parcel of football, especially at this time of the season, Armstrong reckons last year’s experience should stand Killie in good stead when going into the season run-in this term while looking to steer clear of an immediate drop back to the Championship. 

“That’s the only focus now, keeping the team in the Premiership and pushing the team as far up the league as possible,” Armstrong said. “It’s a challenge we’re all really looking forward to, every one of us. 

“I’ve always been used to being round about the promotion places. I’d rather be in this league than fighting for promotion to the Championship. 

“We did that last year. The boys were brilliant last year. It wasn’t as easy as we’d maybe have wanted it to be, but we got over the line. The fans were massive with that. The boys turned up when it mattered.  

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“It’s been good to play in the top league. That’s where you want to be. You don’t want to be fighting for promotion in the Championship, you’d rather be in the Premiership and pushing up as much as you can. 

“Last year’s objective was obviously to achieve Premiership football. This year it’s still Premiership football.  

“We don’t want to be anywhere near that Championship. The boys aren’t worried about what’s below us, we’re just looking forward to the games, winning them, and putting on performances.” 

Last week was a real sore one for the Ayrshire club to take. Defeated in the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup by Inverness, who then went on to discover League One Falkirk as their next-round opponents in the semis of the competition. 

Caley Thistle were deserved winners in the Highlands. The first five minutes of the tie aside, Killie didn’t show up. 

Armstrong insists the right attitude has been there for the players all week in training and he and his teammates are raring to go ahead of what could be deemed a must-win at home to Saints. 

He said: “The weekend was a tough one to take. After the game was tough. When you see the draw as well, we probably still had a bit of a hangover from that. 

“We had to get over it pretty quickly as we’ve got a massive game coming up on Saturday.  

“We’ve put that one to bed now. It’s disappointing to miss out on an opportunity to play at Hampden again. It would’ve been a bonus. 

“Of course, it makes it worse to see who we could’ve played. Any person would find it sore to see that a League One team has got through to the next round.  

“We can’t dwell on it too much because we’ve got too many important things coming up. That’s the way we’re looking at it.  

“Training’s been good. We managed to get a full session on Monday and Tuesday. We had a day off on Wednesday and we’ve had another good session today. 

“We talked about the Inverness game on Monday morning to get it out of our systems. After that, we couldn’t let it affect us. We’ve trained hard. All of the boys have been bang at it.”