Tommy Wright’s belief helped reignite Liam Craig’s career.
And the St Johnstone manager will do the same for Tony Watt, according to the experienced midfielder.
Watt hit the ground running with an early goal in his first appearance in a Saints jersey at Berwick on Tuesday night and is set to play against East Fife in the Betfred Cup tomorrow.
And Craig has been very impressed with what he’s seen of the ex-Celtic man so far.
“For someone who has not played since November, it’s credit to him,” he said.
“He’s come in and shown how sharp he is in training. On Tuesday he scored early and created two goals.
“The goalkeeper has made a great save to deny him and there were a couple scrambles in the box he was unlucky with.
“He is only going to get better and he has a manager here who is believing in him.
“He has a group of players that, right away, see his class and how good he is. He is going to add to what is already a good squad.
“David McMillan got a goal and Callum Hendry had great energy, movement and touches when he came on.
“There is great competition up there.
“You don’t play at the level he has if you are not a good football player.
“Like we’ve seen in the past here with players, sometimes you need someone who is going to believe in you, play you and trust you.
“He will definitely get that from the manager as long as he works hard.”
Craig added: “I look at myself three seasons ago when I left Hibs. The manager was really the only one who showed belief in me.
“He brought me back in and gets the best out of you. Four years later I’m still playing.
“You also look at Danny Swanson and Michael O’Halloran.
“When the manager played them and gave them a platform to do what they do best, you get the rewards.
“Definitely on Tuesday night’s showing we are going to get that from Tony.”
Craig is confident that pre-season has been a success for the Perth men, with Watt not the only new boy who has caught the eye.
“Drey (Wright) followed on from Sunday against Aberdeen,” said the former Hibs man. “If you get him on the ball in wide areas then he is going to cause problems.
“A lot of the boys haven’t played together in terms of the younger ones coming up and Tony coming in.
“It’s all positive on the back of Sunday and it was good to come and get a clean sheet.
“You need to give a lot of credit to the staff and also the players.
“We came back and every one of us was fit. We were at a standard which got us into playing with the balls right away.
“We still did the running but got the ball moving and trained at a tempo right away.
“We benefited by going out to Austria. The conditions were hot and we were doing double sessions.
“You can see the younger boys in the squad are more than ready to come in and do a job.
“Greg Hurst was unlucky to get that injury at the weekend because he shows the quality he’s got with the goal.
“In the stand on Sunday were Kano (Chris Kane), Blair (Alston), Joe (Shaughnessy) and Easty (Brian Easton). Then there were others who didn’t come down on Tuesday.
“Already there is a decent squad there and the gaffer wants to add a couple more.
“Now it’s important that we go into the game Saturday, win, and build a cup run going into the season.”