Football - Thompson playing mind games ahead of final

Steven Thompson is not afraid to admit he is "visualising" Hampden glory every day ahead of St Mirren's Scottish Communities League Cup final against Hearts next weekend.

PA Sport

However, the 34-year-old former Rangers, Cardiff and Burnley striker is ready to give everything when he faces another of his former clubs, Dundee United, in their Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash.

As soon as that match is over, Thompson will return to some sports psychology techniques he has picked up over the years to get himself in the best frame of mind for the trip to the national stadium.

"We obviously have the game against Dundee United and have to show a reaction to losing to Dundee during the week, to give belief and confidence back to the supporters for next weekend," he said.

"But there is no doubt you would be lying if you said you weren't thinking of next weekend. It has certainly been at the forefront of my mind for quite some time.

"I think about it on a daily basis. I don't mind talking about it. I am willing to admit that basically it is consuming most of my head space and has been for weeks and I am not scared to admit that.

"I have been visualising plenty of things and they are all positive.

"Visualising is an important part of preparation for sport and in my head I have got quite a few powerful visions.

"You pick up bits and pieces through the years. I have obviously been at a few clubs and sport psychologists have come in and out throughout during my career and talked to players.

"A lot of people were talking about visualisation during the summer at the Olympics and how it can improve your performance and it is a tool I try to use."

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