Cook’s snub ‘shows parity with Irish’

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DANNY LENNON believes St Johnstone’s failure to tempt Paul Cook from Sligo Rovers to become their new manager simply reflects the financial parity between Irish and Scottish football these days.

The Perth club announced that their pursuit of the 44-year-old Englishman as a replacement for Derek McInnes, who departed for Bristol City, was over with Cook later saying he was unhappy with the deal offered to him.

Ahead of St Mirren’s visit to McDiarmid Park in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League today, Lennon said: “The southern Irish league is difficult to compete with and even in Northern Ireland – where we went on a pre-season tour last year – it is very difficult to compete salary-wise (for players).

“We are playing in a very competitive league over here but we are what we are in terms of finances.”

The Buddies boss admitted it will take a lot to get over the shock Scottish Communities League Cup quarter-final defeat by First Division side Ayr United in midweek.

“That will always be with you,” he said.

“Even when the semi-finals come along in February you will be saying ‘if only’.

“But it is not to be and what we are looking for is characters to go out there and show what they are all about. We have to turn that hurt into motivation for upcoming games.”