ST. JOHNSTONE boss Tommy Wright today admitted will try to sign Rangers misfit Michael O'Halloran in January - but might be priced out of a move for him because he is playing so well.

O'Halloran, who returned to McDiarmid Park on loan in January after failing to win a regular first team place at Ibrox, was yesterday named Ladbrokes Premiership Player of the Month for August.

The 26-year-old winger - who was publicly branded "not the type of player Rangers needs" by manager Pedro Caixinha last month - has scored four goals in five games.

Read more: Michael O'Halloran: Finding out I had no future at Rangers under Pedro Caixinha by reading a paper wasn't nice

Wright, who was also named Manager of the Month for August, revealed he had wanted to take the Scot, who was sold for £500,000 in February last year, back to the Saints in a permanent deal this summer.

He will attempt to make the flyer's stay in Perth a long-term one when his loan deal expires, but fears that his rich vein of form may put him out of St. Johnstone's price range.

“I would hope to be able to extend the loan, but a lot of things can happen between now and then,” he said. “Our plan would be to extend it or maybe if I can get the chairman to release a few quid we might even buy him.

“We did ask about buying him, but that didn’t happen. The loan was the next best option but let’s hope we can hold on to him for some time.

“The worry is that his value increases, but I’ve gone into it as a manager knowing that worst-case scenario I will have him until January.

“I’ve been planning for that. We’ve lost our leading scorers every season and that will happen because we’re a smaller club.

Read more: Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha happy to be in class of his own

“If Michael burns it up from now until January and someone pays half a million or whatever and we can’t keep him then I’ll be happy he did the job for me and moved on.”

Asked if he was surprised that Rangers had declined to sell O’Halloran given that he didn’t feature in Caixinha’s long-term plans, Wright said: “When my chairman spoke to Stewart Robertson about buying him permanently Pedro hadn’t made his comments publicly about Michael, although he might have had them privately.

“We spoke to Rangers at the end of the season and didn’t think we would get him. Michael was aware of our interest and his main priority was to get back playing. He wanted to play in an environment where he knew he had to settle quickly to get his career back on track.

“Rangers, for a while, didn’t want him coming to us and I can understand that because they paid us money for him. But I was just happy in the end we got him because Michael made it clear he wanted to come back to us.

“He’s had a bad time so it was an easy choice for him to come to an environment where he’s going to flourish again. It’s great to see him with a little spring in his step and a lot happier.”

Read more: Michael O'Halloran: Finding out I had no future at Rangers under Pedro Caixinha by reading a paper wasn't nice

Meanwhile, Wright admitted he was surprised that Caixinha had spoken publicly about his feelings about O'Halloran.

“You would have to ask Pedro Caixinha why he said what he did about Michael,” said Wright. “It’s beyond me. Michael is an asset for Rangers and he basically ruled him out going back. I find that difficult.

“I don’t really want to get into a ‘he said, they said’, but football is football and the pitch is the same, the rules are the same.

“Sometimes people have their mind made up on certain players. Pedro wanted to bring in eight, nine, ten, eleven players, I lost count.

“Michael was surplus to that, but it’s easy when you’re at a big club not to have a look at what you’ve got and say ‘he’s not exactly what I want, but I’ll work and get the best out of him’. It’s easy to dismiss him and bring in other players when you’ve got the money.

“Everyone is entitled to their opinion and Pedro had a clear vision of what he wanted when he came in and quite a lot of Rangers players weren’t part of that vision. Whatever has happened, I’m delighted I’ve got Michael and it was a no-brainer to bring him back.”