Competition for a place in St Johnstone’s starting line-up has been taken up a notch or two after a busy last couple of days in the transfer window.
The arrival of Ross Callachan, Danny Swanson and Tristan Nydam completed a summer of recruitment which made Tommy Wright a satisfied manager.
And the Perth boss believes those battling to get into the first XI will be just as important this season as those who get a shirt.
“There is now real competition for places and that’s something we haven’t always had in the past,” he said.
“We are strong at the back but it’s in the attacking areas we really have strength now.
“I now have much more scope to change things within games and have that flexibility over the way we can set the team up.
“Obviously, increased competition means the pressure is on the ones who are playing to stay in the team because they have to perform for that to happen.
“Only 11 can play. It will be important for the players to make sure they give their best to either stay in the team or break into the team
“What we have always done is make sure the focus is on the squad here. It’s the squad who gets you through the season.
“That will be the same again, everyone will have their part to play – but once they get their chance it’s up to them to take it.”
One player whose form has been consistently impressive in the early weeks of the campaign is keeper Zander Clark.
And Wright believes he is benefitting from a change of emphasis in the team’s style of play.
He explained: “Zander’s made important saves and his distribution has been good. We’re not asking him just to lump it every time.
“I think he’s enjoying being able to play a bit more at the back.
“We’ve known for a while that Zander can be a number one goalkeeper and he’s proved that this season.
“Long may that continue.”