Denny Johnstone wants to make a name for himself at St Johnstone

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Denny Johnstone admits he is playing for his future in the second half of the season after making an impact at St Johnstone last month.

The on-loan Colchester striker struck his first goal for Saints in a 3-1 victory over Rangers and followed that up with a headed equaliser against Ross County.

The 22-year-old was sacrificed at half-time during Saturday’s home defeat by Dundee as Tommy Wright changed shape following Richard Foster’s red card.

However, he is determined to use his purple patch as a platform to kick on after the winter break.

“I knew when I arrived that it would be tough to get in because the boys had done so well,” the summer signing told Press Association Sport.

“But that was why I wanted to come to the club, because I knew they had a lot of positive results and I wanted to add to another positive season.

“I have been working hard for the past few months and I just had to be patient and wait for my chance.

“The Rangers game was a perfect time to come in with the good performance. The boys helped me get that goal and I kicked on from there.

“I’m hungry for more goals now. I want to keep scoring and getting more positive results.

“I’m out of contract at the end of this season so I will be trying my utmost to secure a deal, whether that be here or elsewhere.

“But I’m only taking it one game at a time. I just want to keep scoring, working hard and helping the team.”

The former Celtic youth player added: “It’s been a little bit different from last season in League Two in England.

“It’s a different style, it’s a lot quicker in the tempo here but I am getting used to that now.

“I like being that focal point in attack, I like holding the ball for the boys. Especially in the last few weeks, the way we have been playing has suited my game.”

After learning off the likes of former Motherwell striker Chris Porter and ex-Hibernian forward Clayton Donaldson during his spell in England, Johnstone is feeding off the advice of experienced Saints forward Steven MacLean.

“You can always learn things off different players and he has done a lot in the game,” Johnstone said. “Even in training, watching little things that he does has been a help.

“It’s always beneficial, helping how to get the better of defenders in certain situations and seeing little things that senior pros do and adding that to your game.

“Last year I played with Chris Porter, who had a spell in Scotland, and I learned a few things off him. He liked to be the focal point in attack and bring players into the game.

“And when I was at Birmingham, Clayton Donaldson was another, he was very, very good at the physical side of the game.”