by Ben Kearney.
Jack Ross admits he will be forever indebted to his former club St Mirren – but insists there will be no room for sentiment when his Hibernian side travel to Paisley tonight.
Sunderland came calling for Ross after he led the Buddies back to the Ladbrokes Premiership with ease. After losing his first six matches in charge, he never looked back – appeasing the fans with attacking football.
His time at the Black Cats was cut short after a run of poor form, but he believes the experience of a constant fixture list will only improve him as a manager.
Ross said: “I had a 61-game season last year. I was used to the relentlessness of eight, nine, 10 fixtures a month. Although I say this period is quite busy, it is probably the norm for me or certainly it has been for me over the last year-and-a-half.
“I think that is standing me in good stead for this period that we have got and then after the winter break, it settles down again.”
His last visit to the Simple Digital Arena in a pre-season friendly saw his side score six without reply, and he hopes his knowledge of the club will stand him in good stead.
After 18 months away from Paisley, he still keeps in touch with members of the St Mirren backroom staff, and their supporters.
He said: “I’m looking forward to it. I went back quite quickly with Sunderland in a pre-season match after I left. It is a club and a stadium that means a lot to me, both as player and a manager.
“I still speak to several people at the club, still close to them and have always kept a close eye on what they are doing, but the focus and energy is very much about going to win the game as opposed to anything else.”
Ross doesn’t know what type of reception he will get returning to the club, admitting he’s perhaps more familiar with the surroundings in Paisley than Edinburgh.
“You never know in football. Hopefully, it will be a good one. I had a good period there as manager and a good relationship with people”
A night under the lights 💡
⚽️ St Mirren v Hibernian
📍 The Simple Digital Arena, Paisley
⏰ 7:45pm kick-off
🎟️ St Mirren Ticket Office
Come on You Saints! ⚫️⚪️⚫️ pic.twitter.com/NBRHO7zFHj
— St Mirren FC (@saintmirrenfc) November 26, 2019
⌛️| It’s matchday!
🔜 Tonight we head for Paisley to go head to head with St Mirren in the Ladbrokes Premiership.
👊 You can still buy tickets to get along and back the boys against The Buddies. 👇
— Hibernian FC (@HibernianFC) November 26, 2019