Scottish Premiership
St JohnstoneSt Johnstone1St MirrenSt Mirren2

St Johnstone 1-2 St Mirren

By Scott DavieBBC Scotland

A late strike from Adam Drury handed St Mirren their second win of the Premiership season against St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park.

Jason Naismith opened the scoring for St Mirren with a right-footed shot from 25-yards in the 28th minute.

St Johnstone's Steven Anderson headed in from a from Lee Croft corner to level the scores after 68 minutes.

Drury sealed the points after good work by John McGinn, slotting past Alan Mannus with three minutes remaining.

The win means means all seven points collected by St Mirren this season have so far have come away from home and takes Tommy Craig's side to within two points of the Perth club who have now lost four on the bounce in the Premiership.

St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright made four changes to the team that lost at Tannadice last time out but James McFadden wasn't one of those to benefit.

The former Everton and Scotland star had to settle for a place on the bench after signing on at McDiarmid Park until the end of the season earlier in the week.

Buddies boss Tommy Craig stuck with the team that snatched a point at Pittodrie in midweek and the confidence boost from that result was evident in their play early on.

The hosts' possession football was as bright as the Paisley club's yellow away kit at times but the Perth men worked hard to ensure it lacked penetration in the key areas.

That was reflected in Kenny McLean going direct for goal with a 40-yard free-kick from the middle of the park that flew high over Mannus's crossbar.

In fact, it took fully 28 minutes for either side to have a serious shot on goal but what a strike it turned out to be as Naismith blasted the visitors in front.

It was a goal that involved both St Mirren full backs as Sean Kelly hit the goal-line down the left and Naismith lashed his effort past Mannus from just beyond the right of the box.

St Johnstone should have levelled immediately after the restart when Michael O'Halloran burst clear only to lean back and hit his shot off target, when it looked easier to score.

The home side did have the ball in the net after 40 minutes, but Brian Graham bundled over Marian Kello as he met Simon Lappin's cross and referee Don Robertson was right to disallow it.

St Johnstone manager Wright rearranged his side at the interval as O'Halloran was taken off with James McFadden given a 45-minute debut appearance.

Lee Croft then replaced David Wotherspoon early in the second half and the Perth men enjoyed more possession - even if Kello was not troubled significantly.

The St Mirren keeper was embarrassed when the home side equalised in the 68th minute by allowing Steven Anderson to nip in and head home Scott Brown's corner from point-blank range.

From then on it was the Perth Saints who looked the more likely to score with Graham having another disallowed effort - this time for a tight offside decision.

However, St Mirren have made a habit of grabbing valuable late goals in recent matches, and substitutes Ross Caldwell and Drury combined to claim an impressive winner in the 87th minute.

Caldwell threaded a delightful pass into the inside right channel and the 19-year-old showed real composure to clip the ball over Mannus - and all three points belonged to the Paisley side.

Line-ups

St Johnstone

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Mannus
  • 19Miller
  • 2Mackay
  • 6Anderson
  • 24Easton
  • 10WotherspoonSubstituted forCroftat 61'minutes
  • 18Davidson
  • 20BrownSubstituted forCaddisat 75'minutes
  • 4Lappin
  • 14Graham
  • 29O'HalloranSubstituted forMcFaddenat 45'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Wright
  • 8McDonald
  • 11Morgan
  • 16Caddis
  • 17McFadden
  • 22Croft
  • 35Hurst

St Mirren

Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 28Kello
  • 2Naismith
  • 4McAusland
  • 6GoodwinBooked at 54mins
  • 3KellyBooked at 51mins
  • 14ReillySubstituted forCaldwellat 77'minutesBooked at 88mins
  • 7McGinn
  • 8McLean
  • 11WyldeSubstituted forBrownat 69'minutes
  • 10MarwoodSubstituted forDruryat 63'minutes
  • 16Ball

Substitutes

  • 17Drury
  • 18Yaqub
  • 19Brown
  • 29Caldwell
  • 30Baird
  • 34Morgan
  • 46Wilks
Referee:
Don Robertson
Attendance:
3,400

Match Stats

Home TeamSt JohnstoneAway TeamSt Mirren
Possession
Home54%
Away46%
Shots
Home5
Away7
Shots on Target
Home1
Away2
Corners
Home5
Away3
Fouls
Home11
Away12

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, St. Johnstone 1, St. Mirren 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 1, St. Mirren 2.

  3. Post update

    Attempt missed. Gary Miller (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

  4. Post update

    Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Jim Goodwin.

  5. Post update

    Sean Kelly (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  6. Post update

    Foul by Lee Croft (St. Johnstone).

  7. Post update

    David Mackay (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Callum Ball (St. Mirren).

  9. Booking

    Ross Caldwell (St. Mirren) is shown the yellow card.

  10. Post update

    Lee Croft (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Ross Caldwell (St. Mirren).

  12. Goal!

    Goal! St. Johnstone 1, St. Mirren 2. Adam Drury (St. Mirren) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Ross Caldwell.

  13. Post update

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

  14. Post update

    Foul by Ross Caldwell (St. Mirren).

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Marc McAusland (St. Mirren) header from a difficult angle on the left misses to the left.

  16. Post update

    Foul by Liam Caddis (St. Johnstone).

  17. Post update

    John McGinn (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Mirren. Ross Caldwell replaces Thomas Reilly.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Johnstone. Liam Caddis replaces Scott Brown.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Thomas Reilly (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Dundee Utd96121812619
2Hamilton85211551017
3Kilmarnock9522127517
4Inverness CT8512127516
5Aberdeen95131612416
6Celtic7421156914
7Partick Thistle83141312110
8Dundee9243912-310
9St Johnstone9306612-69
10St Mirren9216815-77
11Motherwell9216515-107
12Ross County8107620-143
View full Scottish Premiership table

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