Ryan McGowan wouldn’t want to pick a winner in a race between St Johnstone’s two new speedsters.
The Saints defender is just glad he’s in the same team as them and that there’s now Perth pace up front.
And, with Benji Kimpioka and/or Adama Sidibeh on the pitch, McGowan is confident that Craig Levein’s side will carry an attacking threat to scare their opponents.
“It sounds funny, but defenders don’t particularly like defending,” said the former Australia international.
“We want the game being played in the other half. The less pressure on us the better.
“I thought we did that well against Ross County.
“It means that if they do get the ball out we can be on the front foot as defenders.
“To have players from the start and off the bench who can scare defenders into retreating back is definitely something that helps us.
— SPFL (@spfl) February 5, 2024
“Benji scored from a ball over the top. Then Adama got us the pitch as well and showed he can make things happen if we get a pass down the channels.
“We were able to play in Ross County’s half in the last 20 or 25 minutes and a lot of that was down to him.
“That’s something we have been missing.”
McGowan added: “I couldn’t tell you which one would win a race but I wouldn’t want to be involved in it!
“They’re both very quick when they get going.
“They like playing on the shoulder.
“Sometimes you come up against players who have all the pace but don’t know how best to use it.
“Adama has raw power. You could see that in the headers he was winning.
“He’s a bit more physical than Benji.
“I thought Adama was really good for us. He’d only been with us from Friday and gave the team exactly what we wanted after he came on.
“He made all the right runs.
“There’s excitement about players like Adama – even as team-mates.
“You love to see someone given a platform in a good league. Fans, players, everybody likes this type of story.”
There was a bit of personal redemption for McGowan in Dingwall given it was Saints’ August defeat there that turned out to be his last appearance for three months, with Levein’s predecessor, Steven MacLean, deciding to leave him out for the rest of his tenure.
“I was a bit apprehensive going up there because that was the graveyard at the start of the season,” said the 34-year-old.
“But the day turned out really well and it was a massive win for us.
“We can play a lot better but when you consider the magnitude of the game in terms of the league position of the two teams, it was a really important one.
“We were all absolutely delighted to come back down the road with three points.
“Now we want to build on it against Hearts and be the team that ends their good run.
— St. Johnstone FC (@StJohnstone) February 6, 2024
“We know that we can still get better both in and out of possession.
“There’s a lot of room for improvement.”