ST MIRREN boss Danny Lennon is relishing the chance to whisk his Buddies away to their Spanish training camp.
Saints jetted out earlier today and will take on npower Championship side Barnsley tomorrow before facing a Spanish fourth Division side at the weekend.
While Lennon was praised last season for the way his men played a fluent passing game, the Paisley gaffer knows that this time there must be a more pragmatic approach and one that will hopefully be rewarded with a place in the SPL top six.
"The opportunity to go abroad and train in more amenable conditions is fantastic," said Lennon.
"The boys have come back in good shape and we have had a good nine or 10 days under our belts, but the trip to Spain will move things on.
"We have a game with Barnsley tomorrow and that will provide us with a real gauge as to where we are and we will have another run-out against a Spanish fourth division team at the weekend.
"That will give me a chance to look at all our players while also trying out a few things. For us the next few days are going to be absolutely vital in our preparation. Everybody has the chance to impress."
The new season will be Lennon's third in the SPL and he is determined to maintain the progress set by last term's eighth-place finish.
The Saints gaffer said: "I am like everyone else in the management game in that I am learning all the time. I think that most managers in the SPL will set their stall out to finish in the top six and I am no different.
"There are a couple of things that we will tweak for next season, but overall my philosophy remains the same and that is to play the game in the right manner by working the ball as much as possible.
"We know that maybe we did not make enough of the amount of possession we had last season and that is probably the one area I am pushing for an improvement."
The arrival of one-time Chelsea kid Sam Parkin and ex-Newcastle Youth Lewis Guy to boost the Saints attack has only served to back up his determination to add cutting edge to his team's pleasing passing game this season.
Just as important to Saints' fortunes will be the ability of ex-Scotland striker Stevie Thompson to stay injury free and go close to replicating his 16-goal tally from last term.
An upbeat Lennon said: "We wanted to give ourselves more options up top and we have done that with the arrival of Sam Parkin and Lewis Guy.
"Stevie Thompson has come back from the break in great shape and you also have to factor in Dougie Imrie into the equation.
"I think we have the players to pose various problems to our opposition, whoever they are, next season."
Meanwhile, Saints have also snapped up Celtic starlets 17-year-old Mo Yaqub and 16-year-old Adam Brown for their Under-20 squad.