St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick not concerned despite Sunderland loss

St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick insists the Buddies are not reaching for the panic button despite Saturday’s drubbing by Sunderland.

Jack Ross returned to Paisley with his new Black Cats side but refused to take it easy on his former employers and his successor Alan Stubbs as they dished out a 6-0 thrashing.

It is a result that has got some of the Saints support fearing the worst as they look ahead to the Ladbrokes Championship winners’ top-flight return.

But former club skipper Fitzpatrick is refusing to worry just yet.

Speaking ahead of Tuesday’s Betfred Cup clash with Queen’s Park at Hampden, he told Football Paradise: “It’s a sore one when you lose any game, even if it is just a friendly.

“But to be fair we’re not looking too much into the game at the weekend. If you look at what Alan did, we had trialists out and changed about six players.

“So it was more about fitness levels and we just felt the match was a really good opportunity to get guys up to speed in that regard.

“Yeah the result was disappointing but generally we’re not worrying too much about it. It’s certainly not panic stations.”

Stubbs has cleared out 16 members of Saints’ promotion-winning squad but Fitzpatrick has backed the new boss’ recruitment plans.

“We’re in transition and if we’re being honest, St Mirren are a year ahead of what we’d planned,” he admitted.

“We’re going into the Premiership quite quickly. We’ve lost a really good manager but feel we’ve replaced him with someone of the same quality in Alan Stubbs.

“So there are changes being made and that’s going to take time.

“That was Jack’s plan too. The team that won the Championship were fantastic but the plans were always to strengthen bit by bit.

“The new manager has come in with his own ideas and we’ve backed him too.

“There is definitely still more work to be done in terms of recruitment – in and out. We’ve invested in bringing some young players into the squad so it’s all positive.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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