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We are not safe yet, insists St Johnstone boss Callum Davidson

St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson (Andrew Milligan/PA).
St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson (Andrew Milligan/PA).

St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson insisted his team were still not yet safe from automatic relegation after Jack Fitzwater’s late goal saw Livingston hold them to a 1-1 draw at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

The Livi defender scrambled home a 90th-minute leveller to cancel out Glenn Middleton’s back post header, leaving 11th-placed Saints six points clear of bottom side Dundee with two games to go.

Saints’ goal difference is also seven better, but Davidson said the job was not done yet, although he admitted he has already had an eye on a likely relegation play-off, a tie he wants to take momentum into.

Asked if he felt his side had done enough to stave off automatic relegation, he said: “No, I’m not that type of person – we need to make sure we go and put a good performance in against Aberdeen.

“We want good performances between now and the end of the season and if we get to the play-offs then we go in in a confident mood with the players believing in what we are doing.

“I’ve already looked (at the play-offs) for the last 10 or 12 weeks as I was hopeful we would get there.

“From where we were in January, I think we were five or six points behind Dundee and we wanted to get to 10th and it’s not happened, so next it’s about how we stay in this league.

“St Johnstone don’t have a divine right to be in this league and we’re working extremely hard because we’re desperate to stay in it.”

Livingston boss David Martindale praised his players’ attitude as they chased down an equaliser despite having little to play for as they sit comfortable in midtable.

Despite the disappointment of missing out on the top six, Martindale said his side had already achieved their points target, but he insisted they would try to maintain the high standards in their final two games of the campaign against St Mirren and Dundee.

He said: “We’ve achieved the objectives from Livingston Football Club’s point of view and it’s up to me as a manager to try and make sure we maintain these standards.

“The individual target that we speak about at the start of the season is 44 points – I don’t like making it public because you can set aspirations and ambitions that you might not be able to hit, so 10th place has to be it (the aim).

“We got 44 points last year and we’re sitting on 45 now with two games to go.

“It’s just a wee bit unfortunate that those 44 points came on match day 35 as opposed to match day 32 or match day 33 so that’s the one that’s killed us.

”Fair play to the lads, this game could have petered out at 1-0, but they fought really hard and got back into the game, created chances to try and win the game of football.”

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