Dundee United: Stuart Armstrong eyes defensive improvement

Stuart Armstrong
Stuart Armstrong has scored five goals in his last nine games for Dundee United

Stuart Armstrong reckons Dundee United need to tighten up in defence if they are to be serious title contenders.

The 22-year-old scored the opener as United beat Hamilton Academical 3-2 on Monday to go third in the Premiership.

The Tannadice outfit had been pegged back from 2-0 in front.

"We score plenty of goals and are exciting going forward, so if we find the right balance between defence and attack we're definitely up there," Armstrong told BBC Scotland.

When asked if he believes United are in title contention, Armstrong added: "I don't think we're thinking along those lines at the minute, we're just taking one game at a time.

Stuart Armstrong
Stuart Armstrong netted the opener against Hamilton with a fine strike from outside the box

"Of course we'd like to think we'll be up there towards the end of the season, doing our best to challenge, but we have to be realistic as well.

"The gaffer tells us every game that we're capable of being up there and to believe in ourselves, and to perform like we are worthy challengers. We'll take it one game at a time but everyone wants to see someone else win the league."

Armstrong has been in great form in recent weeks, scoring five goals in his last nine games.

He has been attracting the attention of several clubs in England, and Celtic have also been credited with an interest in the midfielder.

Whatever the future holds for Armstrong, he is clearly enjoying his time working under Jackie McNamara.

"I think he lets you express yourself more than anything, he won't ever criticise you for losing the ball in the final third or for trying something that doesn't come off," he added.

"He allows a lot of freedom and it's very important for forward players like us to be allowed that privilege. He's a great motivator who is very passionate.

"It's a great team spirit with a lot of young players and experienced players, it's a great mix and everyone gets on well with each other.

"There's a lot of things to play for so it's an exciting time for Dundee United."