Liam Gordon is acutely aware of the variety and quality of Rangers’ attacking threat.
And he is also acutely aware of the nature of the goals St Johnstone have been conceding recently.
But neither of the above has dampened the centre-back’s optimism ahead of the Perth side’s Wednesday evening clash with Steven Gerrard’s runaway league leaders.
Determined to ensure that a creeping susceptibility to cross-balls and set-pieces gets corrected, Gordon does not believe the rest of Saints’ good defensive work should be overlooked.
And keeping the most potent strike force in the country quiet at McDiarmid Park would be the perfect way to put the Livingston and St Mirren frustrations to bed and the overall picture into some perspective.
“I’m not going to lie, it was very disappointing on Saturday,” said Gordon.
“For 40 minutes of the second half and down to 10 men it looked like they had run out of ideas.
“They couldn’t break us down so to lose the two late goals in the fashion that we did was really hard to take.
“It wasn’t brilliant play.
“They were two goals that we probably should have defended better. That was really tough to take but we are looking to bounce back.
“Apart from the cup game it was a hard week for us, losing against Livingston and St Mirren. Those were six points we didn’t feel we should have lost.
“But the games are coming thick and fast now.
“There are plenty to give us a chance of getting back up that table to where we should be and where we want to be.”
Gordon, who will captain Saints for a second time in the absence of the suspended Jason Kerr if Liam Craig doesn’t start, added: “We are playing open and expansive football and teams are looking to hit on the counter-attack. But we are dealing with that.
“The goals we have been losing haven’t been from brilliant play from the opposition.
“We are losing disappointing goals from of point of view.
“That is something we have to look at and address. It can’t keep happening if we want to get to where we want to be.”
Gerrard is spoiled for choice with his options up front and Gordon wouldn’t be able to say with any certainty who he is likely to be directly up against. He knows there will be no soft option – but also that the opposition is far from unbeatable.
“It is going to be a very difficult game,” said the 24-year-old. “They are a top outfit.
“They have more options up front this season.
“(Kemar) Roofe has a very good background. He has played at a high level for a few seasons.
“And you don’t have to go into (Jermain) Defoe’s background. Everyone knows what he has done in his career as one of the best strikers in England.
“And you also have (Cedric) Itten and of course (Alfredo) Morelos. We all know how dangerous Morelos is and he has been scoring all the time in the European games.
That result shows Rangers aren’t invincible.
“But hopefully there is nothing we can’t deal with.
“We know we are going to be up against it but look at what St Mirren did in the cup.
“That result shows Rangers aren’t invincible. They can be beaten.
“We lost 3-0 at Ibrox at the start of the season but we created chances to make it closer. It didn’t feel like a 3-0 game.
“We lost a goal to a top drawer (Borna) Barisic free-kick and one from a corner.
“We definitely believe we can get something from this game.”
Gordon is one of the Saints players who manager Callum Davidson referred to when he was talking about the “few knocks and bruises” picked up in Paisley.
There isn’t a question mark hanging over his availability for the 6pm kick-off, though.
“I took a wee knock and I have dislocated my finger as well,” said Gordon. “It was an eventful afternoon to say the least.
“But you just get on with it. We have a big game against Rangers that we need everyone fighting fit for.
“The league is tight. And as I say, the games are coming thick and fast. But that’s what you want as a footballer.
“There are a lot of matches coming up that we feel we should be picking up points from.
“We know how good we can be and that is something we are going to strive for.
“It’s not like we have been turning in poor performances. In the grand scheme of things there have been a lot of positives. There are plenty games coming up and hopefully we can pick up plenty of points.”
Captaining his boyhood club against Celtic was an unforgettable career high and scoring his first St Johnstone goal against Rangers would have a nice Old Firm symmetry about it.
“I have had a few chances and came close again on Saturday (with a glancing near post header)”, said Gordon. “There has been a lot of good goalkeeping against me!
“If we are struggling to get a goal I have to step up to the plate. I am trying my hardest to do it.
“It is only a matter of time before I do get goals.”