Callum Davidson is hoping for another special McDiarmid Park European night after St Johnstone were handed a glamour Europa League draw that guarantees them a battle with a football heavyweight.
The second leg of the third round qualifying tie will take place in Perth the following Thursday night.
And the one certainty for next month is that Davidson’s cup double winners will be going up against stellar opposition (both PSV and Galatasaray have won a European trophy) in an August 12 Fair City clash that will whet the appetite of supporters who have been starved of competitive action over the last 16 months.
📸's from today's training session 🦁 pic.twitter.com/8GMLRcNckX
— Galatasaray EN (@Galatasaray) July 19, 2021
“Whatever the draw was, it was going to be tough,” said Davidson, who will lead Saints into their sixth Euro campaign in nine seasons.
“We knew the teams that we could face.
“We will just need to wait and see to find out the result of their tie, then prepare as best we can.
“It’s a huge draw for a club like St Johnstone.
“If you’d said you are going to play one of the top teams in Europe you would say: ‘No, not possible’.
“So we need to go and enjoy it. We’ll do the best we can.
“We want to put on a good performance and give a good account of ourselves to continue what we’ve been doing in the last six months.”
Davidson added: “Hopefully we can get a crowd because European nights are really special.
“Part of getting to Europe is having the fans able to celebrate it as well. The fans make these nights special.
“We’re going to get a lot of people through the door if it’s either PSV or Galatasaray.
“A lot of people in Scotland will want to come – not just St Johnstone fans.
“I remember playing in front of eight or nine thousand against Eskişehirspor and what a great occasion it was.
“It was very hot over there and then the boys played in ridiculous heat against Alashkert.
“But the weather has been warm here so we’re getting used to it!”
— PSV (@PSV) June 21, 2021
There are established internationals and household names in the PSV and Galatasaray squads, both runners-up in their leagues last season, and over the next couple of weeks Davidson will do his best to top up his knowledge on how the teams are likely to set up and play.
“I’ll try to get eyes on them and use as many contacts as I can to find out what they are about,” he said.
“It will be difficult but we’ll do the best we can. Had it not been for Covid rules, I would have got someone over to watch games.
“I’ll need to go through my black book and see who is across there!”