Gary Teale is hoping to put his coaching education to one side for now and return to the mix for St Mirren's trip to face St Johnstone tomorrow.

The winger suffered a groin strain in training last week which that ruled him out of Saints' defeat to Hibs last weekend.

That gave the budding coach the opportunity of a bird's eye view from the stand and a chance to analyse the action.

However, he is eager to return to action and is hoping that the problem will ease sufficiently for him to take his place against St Johnstone.

"I pulled the adductor muscle and it is very frustrating to be out," he said. "It was just one of these things.

"I felt it go and I knew there was no way that I'd make the game. It's had a bit of rest and it isn't quite so painful now but we probably won't make a decision on whether or not I'll play until the last minute.

"By all accounts, St Johnstone's pitch isn't the best and that might be a consideration. But if it was up to me I'd play!

"I find it really tough to sit and watch the game from the sidelines. I'm taking my coaching badges just now and it does make you look at the game in a different way, but at the same time when you know that you could be out there playing, it is frustrating."

St Mirren's bubble was burst last weekend with the defeat to Hibs but Teale has insisted that the belief within the team has not been punctured.

Danny Lennon's side are struggling in second-bottom and while the winger believes that their position is not a true reflection on their ability as a team, he is nevertheless well aware that the time has come for the team to do their talking on the pitch.

"It is all very well saying that we deserve to be further up the table, but now we have to go out and prove it," he said.

"There is no point in saying that we deserve more. Our results through that bad spell in October and November have cost us a bit but there is still a lot of points to play for.

"There is a bit of competition within the team for places given the games that we have coming up and it would be good to try and go into the League Cup Final and next weekend's Scottish Cup tie against Celtic on the back of good results."

Teale also expects that St Johnstone will have taken a lift from their midweek point that they took from Celtic.

It was former Saints forward Nigel Hasselbaink who grabbed the leveller in the latter stages of the game and Teale knows that the pacy forward will be a threat.

"As a team you take a lift whenever you do anything against either half of the Old Firm," said Teale. "When you've been on and got a goal then your confidence does take a massive boost.

"The guys here know what Nigel can do. He is very fast and he'll have his head up coming here, looking to show us what we've missed.

"Hopefully we can keep him quiet and try to get ourselves what would be a pretty big three points."