Injury has meant that Michael O’Halloran’s St Johnstone return hasn’t gone as smoothly as he would have hoped.
But the Perth attacker expects to be “fighting fit” for the team’s bid to secure a top six place.
O’Halloran didn’t get much game-time in Australia and he hasn’t had a clear run at McDiarmid Park either.
Now the 28-year-old, who has made two starts and three appearances off the bench since rejoining Saints, is looking to make up for lost time against Livingston tomorrow and in the remaining fixtures this season.
“I’d just come back from injury when I was over in Australia and it had been a while since I had played,” said O’Halloran.
“I was happy to get back out on the park. We had a lot of games at that time and, because I hadn’t played, it’s maybe how I picked up this injury.
“It was the lower part of my hamstring but I’ve been doing my rehab and have been in with the physio. It was nothing too serious and it was just about making sure it was right.
“There are a lot of big games coming up for us now in terms of wanting to push back into the top six. That is the aim for us and hopefully I am fighting fit for this weekend’s game with Livingston.
“There are five games before the split so if we can get as many wins as we can before that, then hopefully we can get in there.
“When you train all week, it’s for the Saturday game. There is no better feeling when you wake up in the morning for the three o’clock kick-off. I hope I can play a part.”
O’Halloran believes Saints’ recent results don’t give an accurate reflection of how they have been playing.
“If you look through the last few games – Hibernian especially – I think the boys have been really unlucky,” he said.
“It was a game when watching that I thought we shouldn’t have lost. But that is football and you need to forget about that.
“It will be a tough game against Livingston and they are doing well this season after coming up. We’ll be wary of that and will be training hard through the week to make sure we’re ready for it.
“They are well-organised and have some good players. They’re doing well, maybe a wee blip lately, but early on they had some good results.
“I got a minute against Livingston in the last game, but we got the win and it was good to get back out on the pitch. We’re away from home on the astrotruf which will be difficult, but we’ll be prepared.”
There were a few new faces when O’Halloran came back to the club but the dressing room remains a tight one.
“I’ve been getting to know the new boys better,” he said. “It’s a lot younger squad from when I left and I’m now one of the senior members.
“I’m still relatively young but there’s now a lot of youth in the team. It’s a good group of lads who have been very welcoming for me coming back.
“That’s what I’ve always noticed about St Johnstone. The lads have always been really together and that has helped us get through things.”