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Livingston boss David Martindale ‘not looked at league table’

David Martindale’s Livingston are fifth (Jane Barlow/PA)
David Martindale’s Livingston are fifth (Jane Barlow/PA)

Livingston manager David Martindale insists he is paying no attention to the cinch Premiership table even though it makes for pretty reading for his own team.

The Lions are fifth and will climb at least up to fourth if they win away to St Mirren on Saturday. Victory in Paisley could even elevate them to third if Hearts slip up at home to Rangers.

“I’ve not looked at that, you’ve just sprung that on me,” said Martindale, when it was pointed out that the Lions could finish the weekend in the top three.

“Honestly, I go through spells when I look at the league and spells when I don’t look at the league for four or five weeks.

“I don’t need to look at the league because everybody else is telling me, including the media. I don’t really pay too much attention to the league at this point in time. I take one game at a time.”

Although keen to finish in the top six, Martindale stressed that his main priority remains to avoid relegation.

“We have aspirations of finishing top six,” he said. “It would be incredible to hit a European spot but we’ve got to keep it in perspective.

“Our goals at the start of the season are 10th or above, but collectively we have ambitions and aspirations. Top six would be fantastic but staying in the Premiership for another year is our objective at the start of the season.”

This weekend pits two of the league’s surprise packages together, with fourth-placed St Mirren level on points with Livi after they kept up their strong start under Stephen Robinson by beating Celtic 2-0 in the last match before the international break.

“It was a surprise (that St Mirren beat Celtic) but when I watched the first 20 minutes of the game, it probably became less of a surprise,” said Martindale.

“St Mirren set up very well, Ange (Postecoglou) had made a few changes and you could tell it was going to be a difficult game for Celtic.

“Fair play to Stephen and St Mirren. They’ve got a style and identity, and it’s probably very similar to when Stephen had success at Motherwell and was getting to cup finals.

“He’s brought a bit of continuity in terms of players he knows from his time at Morecambe and Motherwell and I think he’s done a fantastic job. They look like a club that’s on the up so it’s going to be a difficult game for us.”