St Mirren manager has high hopes for Kenny McLean

St Mirren boss Danny Lennon was full of praise for Kenny McLean after the midfielder's stunning opening goal in the 2-0 win over Dundee at Dens Park.

The 20-year-old thundered in a shot from fully 40 yards.

"Maybe this season we will unleash a new Souness or Dalglish and I certainly think McLean has the ability to do that," said a delighted Lennon.

"There will be a little bit of help from myself and the staff, but he certainly has the tools to do it."

Striker Sam Parkin clinched the points for the Paisley side when he grabbed a second goal after the break, leaving St Mirren top of the Scottish Premier League table.

McLean became a fixture in St Mirren's starting XI last season and has two years remaining on his contract.

But Lennon is convinced the midfielder is destined for the top.

"He has a lot of development still in him and we think he is in the correct environment," added the manager.

"Kenny McLean has all to the tools to be a top player, wherever he goes. I see his professionalism and ability on a daily basis."

McLean, who has not been selected for this month's Scotland U21 friendly with Belgium, was taken aback when told that Lennon was talking about him in the same breath as Scotland legends Graeme Souness and Kenny Dalglish.

"I don't know how to take that," he said. "There is a lot to live up to there but hopefully I will keep getting better.

"The manager has given me a platform so hopefully there is better to come.

"I am enjoying my football here so it (moving south) is not something I am looking for in the immediate future.

"I am delighted with the way things are going, working under the gaffer and Tommy Craig is brilliant so hopefully I will keep progressing.

"A year or two down the line we will see what happens, but I just want to do well here."

McLean was similarly modest when asked about his fantastic goal.

"I don't think there will be another one like that this season," he said.

"But it's always good to get a goal like that. It was something I was thinking about but as soon as I got the ball I knew what I was doing.

"I didn't realise how far out I was to be honest but I am not going to catch it any better than that."

McLean was involved in one moment of controversy when Dundee claimed for a penalty following his challenge on Mark Stewart, seconds before Parkin scored the clincher.

The Paisley player said: "I clearly got the ball."

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