Gone are the days when central midfielders used to be shunted out into the wide positions for St Johnstone.
And nobody is happier than Liam Craig at the impact new flying wingers Matty Kennedy and Drey Wright are making at McDiarmid Park.
He said: “It was me and Chris Millar for years!
“The wingers we’ve got now give us a different dimension to our team. Both of them can cause the opposition real problems.
“Full-backs want to push high and if we can get the ball to Matty and Drey they are going to hurt teams.
“And with Tony (Watt) through the middle, playing well and taking chances, that’s a front three that will be effective as long as we can get balls into them.
“It’s a great outlet to have.
“The manager has tried to get us playing in a way that we’ll get it out to our wide players when it’s on.”
As keen as Saints are to be easy on the eye going forward this season, Craig has been in the game for long enough to know that there will be ‘back to basics’ afternoons. And one of them could be today when under-pressure Dundee come to Perth.
“There were a lot of positives to take from our last two home performances against Falkirk and Hibs, and we’re into the last eight of the Betfred Cup,” said the former Falkirk and Hibs man.
“It was tough at Palmerston last weekend but we showed that we can grind out a result when we weren’t playing that well. That’s what you need to do sometimes.
“We’re determined to make McDiarmid Park a hard place to come to this season.
“We dropped too many points here last year – and conceded too many goals from set-pieces – and we want that to change.
“We want to build momentum. The good thing is we’re creating chances and scoring.”
Saints only managed to beat Dundee once last season, albeit that lone victory was a memorable one.
“We shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times at Dens,” Craig recalled.
“Here, Fozzy (Richard Foster) got sent off in the first half but we actually played well with 10 men after that.
“The obvious highlight was the 4-0 win against them.
“We played well enough in the games and we’ll be looking to do that again this season and get results as well.”
Given the reaction of their manager and supporters to Saturday’s Ayr United humiliation, the Dundee players will be a fired-up bunch this afternoon.
“We’ve been in that position ourselves,” said Craig.
“You’re always looking for a reaction and that’s what we have to expect from Dundee.
“I thought they were unlucky against Aberdeen the week before and deserved something from that one.
“It’s what we do that matters, though.
“If we get our good players on the ball we can win the game.
“We’ll be looking to start on the front foot.”
Craig doesn’t believe the Dens touchline bust-up of last season, and all that followed on from it, will carry into this campaign.
“As the manager said earlier the week, last season is all in the past,” he said.
“You need to look forward at the start of every season.
“We’re just concerned with winning games of football.
“There aren’t any easy games in this league but when you look at our matches in September, they don’t come much harder.
“We know how important the games over the next couple of weeks are.”
Craig will seek out his old Saints team-mate, Dundee assistant boss Graham Gartland, after the match as usual.
“I’ve not spoken to the big man for a while,” he said. “He was busy over the summer and so was I.
“We’ve not had the chance to catch up.
“I’ve not been on the coaching side of things but I’d imagine this is a really busy time of the year for them.
“I’m sure after the game we’ll catch up.”