This piece is from yesterday's Buddies Briefing newsletter, which is emailed out at 6pm every Thursday. To receive our full, free St Mirren newsletter straight to your email inbox, click here.

Two weeks on and the words Rugby Park still possess the crippling ability to evoke flashbacks of a tortuous afternoon in Ayrshire.

By no means has the performance against Kilmarnock in that second half been forgotten over the international break. However, perhaps some perspective has been brought into the fold.

There's no defending the capitulation - even now. But it can be dismissed as a blip and put to the side as the real crunch time begins this weekend.

St Mirren's season has already been a success. Never dropping below sixth in the league table after 30 matches is a scenario that would have brought utter disbelief even a decade ago.

Now, though it's about finishing the first step and securing the top six in the immediate aftermath of one of few truly disheartening performances this season.

Sure, there was the 4-0 defeat at Dens Park earlier in the year and some less-than-impressive defeats to Livingston and St Johnstone.

But, largely, those results have merely been blotch marks on an impressive campaign. And with the split now in sight, this is absolutely not the time to change that habit.

Take defeat at Dens Park back in November - the next match was a 1-0 victory over St Johnstone. The 1-0 loss to Livingston - well, that was quickly followed again by another triumph over the Perthshire side.

This time, St Mirren must respond and put in a performance and achieve a result against Motherwell.

Fortunately, there is reason to believe the Buddies will all but guarantee their top six spot this weekend.

In the two meetings between St Mirren and Motherwell this season, the Steelmen have not scored. Granted, St Mirren only scored once, but that was in a 1-0 victory at Fir Park in September.

A repeat of that result would be the perfect remedy for St Mirren on Saturday.

Three points would see Stephen Robinson's side move on 45 points and at the very least preserve the four-point gap over Hibs in sixth.

It's very much that point at the season now where the notifications popping up on the phones of supporters are becoming just as important as what's unfolding on the pitch before them.

With that in mind, this weekend offers the opportunity to leapfrog Kilmarnock and get our own back as they face a tricky trip to the capital to face Hearts at Tynecastle.

Look at Hibs and they've got a difficult tie against Rangers at Ibrox - and Dundee take on St Johnstone in Perth.

It's been a common phrase most weekends this season for St Mirren - but this matchday is absolutely crucial.

In an ideal world, a St Mirren victory would be partnered with losses for Kilmarnock, Hibs and Dundee. And there's every chance that could come to pass.

Regardless of the potentially favourable match-ups in the Scottish Premiership, St Mirren must return from the international break with a performance befitting of the campaign to date.

A confidence-building outing will be crucial heading into the split - and it goes without saying, but so too would three points on the board.


To be nominated for any award in the sporting industry is cause for celebration.

For St Mirren to be genuine contenders in two categories at the Football Business Awards reinforces the good work going on off the pitch in Paisley.

The club is up for both the Partnership of the Year Award - for the collaboration with Kibble - and the Sustainability Award.

A cursory glance shows St Mirren are among esteemed company with La Liga, Tottenham Hotspur, PSG, and Manchester City listed as fellow nominees across the two categories.