St Mirren manager Danny Lennon reckons goalkeeper Craig Samson will have his hands full as he tries to hold onto his first team jersey for the rest of the season.
Former Kilmarnock shot-stopper Sammy, 28, has been in sensational form for the Buddies during the 2011/12 and 2012/13 campaigns, with his impressive string of performances earning him a call-up to the Scotland squad. However, he now has two glove rivals breathing down his neck, with both Chris Smith and Grant Adam determined to replace him in Lennon’s team.
Smith, 26, recently signed a contract extension which will keep him at St Mirren Park until the end of the season, while 21-year-old Adam has now returned to Paisley following a successful loan spell at First Division outfit Airdrie United.
And Lennon said he is thrilled to have a trio of talented goalies at his disposal as he targets a top-six finish in the SPL, as well as chasing glory in both the League Cup and Scottish Cup.
He told Express Sports: “Sammy does have the jersey at this moment in time but, let me tell you this, the other two guys aren’t just there to make up the numbers.
“I now have three goalkeepers who are able to really challenge one another and that can only be healthy for the club.
“I would not hesitate in putting Chris into the team if I felt that was needed and the same goes for Grant.
“It’s now up to the two of them to push Craig and try to get in there.”
Samson has made a staggering 73 consecutive appearances for St Mirren since he claimed the number one jersey at the start of last season.
He will be hoping to impress new Scotland manager Gordon Strachan in the weeks and months ahead as he tries to hold onto his place in the national squad.
And Lennon reckons that, with former Scotland Under-21 cap Smith and ex-Rangers starlet Adam both eager to get the chance to show what they can do between the sticks, there is no way Sammy can afford to rest on his laurels.
“Grant picked up a bad injury at the start of the season and Chris came in to give us a helping hand at a time when we were in need,” said Lennon.
“Chris is a lovely big lad. He’s great to work with and I have really enjoyed his performances, albeit those have come in the reserves.”