Inverness shrugged off the absence of a manager for the last two weeks and consolidated their second place in the Premiership by beating St Johnstone.

Billy McKay's winner ended Saints' winning run at three games and extended the hosts' own to the same number.

With youth coaches Duncan Shearer and Scott Kellacher temporarily in charge, Inverness created more in an otherwise even game.

And the visitors found it difficult to penetrate in the final third.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle remain five points behind leaders Celtic while St Johnstone slip to sixth.

The first piece of serious action, with less than three minutes on the clock, saw Carl Tremarco burst down the left and fire over a precise cross to McKay.

The Northern Ireland international's athletic volley found the net via the post.

Soon after, Graeme Shinnie spurned the chance of a second when he shot over but St Johnstone were still well in the game with Stevie May and in-particular Nigel Hasselbaink frequently looking dangerous.

Hasselbaink had two penetrating runs, but in both cases his efforts were deflected wide.

However, a tight Caley Thistle defence seriously restricted Saints' scoring opportunities.

At the other end, Saints keeper Alan Mannus did well to get one hand to a McKay shot from a tight angle.

The away team's best chance came when Hasselbaink fed David Wotherspoon but the ever-present Tremarco blocked his 18-yard effort.

In the second period, Ross Draper and Marley Watkins both sent attempts narrowly over for Inverness but the rest of the half drifted largely into anonymity.

The Perth side were awarded a late 19-yard free kick but May's effort, and his shot from the rebound, both crashed into the Inverness wall.

So, as Caley Thistle proceed towards what they hope will be the appointment of a new manager before their Scottish Cup tie at home to Morton on 30 November, the new incumbent can be sure he will inherit a team sitting in a clear second place in Scotland's top flight.

Lineup, Bookings (4) & Substitutions (4)

Inverness Caledonian Thistle

  • 12 Brill
  • 03 Shinnie Booked
  • 18 Tremarco
  • 08 Draper
  • 05 Warren
  • 06 Meekings
  • 15 Watkins
  • 09 Foran
  • 07 McKay
  • 11 Ross (Williams - 84' )
  • 10 Doran (Greenhalgh - 93' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Esson
  • 02 Raven
  • 14 Devine
  • 17 Greenhalgh
  • 19 Williams
  • 20 Polworth
  • 23 Agdestein

St Johnstone

  • 01 Mannus
  • 19 Miller (Jahic - 80' )
  • 24 Easton
  • 10 Wotherspoon
  • 02 Mackay
  • 03 Scobbie Booked
  • 07 Millar (Edwards - 67' Booked )
  • 18 Davidson
  • 11 Hasselbaink Booked
  • 17 May
  • 08 McDonald

Substitutes

  • 04 Cregg
  • 05 Wright
  • 14 Edwards
  • 15 Banks
  • 16 Caddis
  • 25 Jahic
  • 41 Kane
Ref: John Beaton
Att: 3,255

Match Stats

Shots

9 6

On target

3 0

Corners

3 6

Fouls

11 13

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Inverness CT 1, St Johnstone 0.

90:00 +4:06 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Inverness CT 1, St Johnstone 0.

90:00 +2:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Inverness CT. Ben Greenhalgh replaces Aaron Doran.

90:00 +2:36

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +2:36

Foul by Steve May (St Johnstone).

90:00 +1:05 Booking

Booking Thomas Scobbie (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

90:00 +1:00

Richie Foran (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the right wing.

90:00 +0:56

Foul by Thomas Scobbie (St Johnstone).

90:00 +0:17

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Josh Meekings.

90:00 +0:04

Attempt blocked. Steve May (St Johnstone) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

89:07

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

89:07

Steve May (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

85:48 Booking

Booking Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) is shown the yellow card.

85:15

Ross Draper (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

85:15

Foul by Brian Easton (St Johnstone).

83:53 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Inverness CT. Danny Williams replaces Nick Ross.

82:41 Booking

Booking Gwion Edwards (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

82:37

Billy McKay (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

82:37

Foul by Gwion Edwards (St Johnstone).

81:05

Attempt missed. Ross Draper (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

80:34

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Thomas Scobbie.

79:58 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, St Johnstone. Sanel Jahic replaces Gary Miller.

79:20

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the left wing.

79:20

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

78:40

Ross Draper (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the right wing.

78:40

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

73:56

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

73:56

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

71:44

Foul by Gary Warren (Inverness CT).

71:44

Gary McDonald (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

68:43

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Carl Tremarco.

66:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, St Johnstone. Gwion Edwards replaces Chris Millar.

64:13

Attempt missed. David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) right footed shot from long range on the left is too high.

60:46

Attempt missed. Steve May (St Johnstone) right footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right.

56:44

Attempt missed. Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) left footed shot from the right side of the box is too high.

50:27

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

50:27

Murray Davidson (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

48:23

Attempt missed. Ross Draper (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the right side of the box is just a bit too high.

47:00

Carl Tremarco (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the right wing.

47:00

Foul by Chris Millar (St Johnstone).

45:00

Second Half begins Inverness CT 1, St Johnstone 0.

45:00 +0:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Inverness CT 1, St Johnstone 0.

41:32

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

41:32

Gary McDonald (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

39:33

Attempt missed. Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

39:04

Foul by Josh Meekings (Inverness CT).

39:04

Steve May (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

38:11 Booking

Booking Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

38:06

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

38:06

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

37:37

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Gary Warren.

35:50

Attempt blocked. David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

35:03

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

35:03

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

34:35

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Brian Easton.

28:22

Foul by Marley Watkins (Inverness CT).

28:22

Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.

27:20

Attempt saved. Billy McKay (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

26:20

Attempt missed. Steve May (St Johnstone) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

25:37

Foul by Marley Watkins (Inverness CT).

25:37

Thomas Scobbie (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

25:18

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

25:18

Murray Davidson (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:28

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Carl Tremarco.

19:15

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Gary Warren.

18:49

Attempt blocked. Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

17:49

Ross Draper (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

17:49

Foul by Murray Davidson (St Johnstone).

16:12

Attempt missed. Ross Draper (Inverness CT) header from the centre of the box is too high.

15:48

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by David Mackay.

15:18

Richie Foran (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

15:18

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

14:23

Hand ball by Carl Tremarco (Inverness CT).

13:21

Nick Ross (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the right wing.

13:21

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

11:36

Attempt missed. Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top left corner.

8:09

Attempt saved. Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

5:50

Foul by Richie Foran (Inverness CT).

5:50

Murray Davidson (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

3:22 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Inverness CT 1, St Johnstone 0. Billy McKay (Inverness CT) right footed shot from very close range to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Carl Tremarco with a cross.

0:58

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Graeme Shinnie.

0:05

Murray Davidson (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:05

Foul by Nick Ross (Inverness CT).

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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