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Killie mood 'night and day' from relegation fears - Mayo

Lewis Mayo says Kilmarnock are being "rewarded" for their late efforts to avoid relegation from the Premiership last term.

Derek McInnes' side have gone from the brink of a rapid return to the second tier in their first season back in the top flight to European contenders this time round.

Mayo, who joined permanently from Rangers in the summer, has noted a stark contrast in the Killie camp from this time last year.

"It's night and day from last season, the atmosphere and the buzz around the club," the defender said.

"It makes such a difference that at the business end of the season, we're looking forward at what what we can achieve rather than getting the job done [and staying up] last season.

"It's more exciting... rather than scrapping like we were last season. It was a big effort to get over the line and I think we dealt with it really well.

"I actually think the biggest reward for last season, we're seeing that this season. All the good work comes off the back of handling that situation last season.

"I think the boys that came in during the summer deserve a lot of credit because they've obviously added a lot, but I also think the group that did it last season and saw it through are seeing the benefit. I feel it."