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Reid enthused by Accies effort
Published : 08 May 2010 18:26:00
Hamilton clinched their highest-ever SPL finish with a 3-2 win at St Johnstone, prompting Billy Reid to declare: "What an effort this season." Accies boss Reid lavished praise on his players after they overhauled today's opponents on the final day of the campaign to snatch seventh place in the table. Having been forced to completely rebuild his squad following last term's first top-flight season for 19 years, Reid is praying he can keep as many of his current crop as possible for next term's SPL assault. "I've got to look at my own squad and say what an effort this season," Reid enthused. "I would love to keep this squad together, I think we've come a long, long way since the start of the season." Reid, who is resigned to losing star midfielder James McArthur, added: "We went into the split and I think we were six points behind St Johnstone and five behind Aberdeen. "Our motivation was always to look above us." In-form Hamilton, who arrived at McDiarmid Park a point behind their hosts, raced into a 2-0 lead through goals from Mark McLaughlin and the livewire Dougie Imrie. Comeback specialists Saints, who had taken something from five of their previous seven games after falling behind, repeated the trick after half-time thanks to Murray Davidson and a Liam Craig penalty. But Accies were not to be denied and James Wesolowski snatched the winner with six minutes remaining. Reid said: "Even at 2-0, I said to the players at half-time, 'This game's not finished. They'll keep coming at you, coming at you', and that's what they did. "All credit to them, they've had a fantastic season. But I think you've seen the spirit of Hamilton Accies as well." He added: "As a manager, I want to be organised and I want my players to give me everything. "I played that way as a player and I'll back my players to the hilt as long as they give me everything. "Everybody in that dressing room gives me 100% - I can't ask for any more." Never mind losing their players, Hamilton are in real danger of losing their manager. But Reid, who was linked with Sheffield Wednesday at the end of last year, said: "I've not any aspirations to move at the moment; I enjoy working at the football club." "You never know what's round the corner but I've got a job to do next season." Opposite number Derek McInnes accepts his side had been riding their luck since failing to make the top six. "Naturally, we wanted to try to finish on a high because it would've been fitting for the season we had," said McInnes, who will lose the likes of Michael Duberry and Paul Sheerin this summer. "There are one or two players finishing up today and it was a last send-off, and we wanted to make it a fitting send-off. "We never really saw that determination within the team until the second half. "Since we just felt short of the top six - although we'd been undefeated up until today in the last five, six games - we haven't been playing with the same style and the same confidence. "But we had shown a determination not to lose games." McInnes' frustration got the better of him when he was sent to the stands in stoppage time. "All I was doing was trying to retrieve the ball and the fourth official tried to stop me doing that," he said. "I reacted, which I shouldn't have, so I apologise for that."