Scottish Premiership
St Johnstone0Ross County0

St Johnstone 0-0 Ross County

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Highlights: St Johnstone 0-0 Ross County

St Johnstone and Ross County drew a blank in the Premiership as Saints' winless run stretched to four games.

Goalkeeper Scott Fox denied home midfielder Stefan Scougall from 20 yards in the first half and blocked Paul Paton's header in the second.

However, Fox was later injured while clearing the ball and had to be replaced by Aaron McCarey.

Davis Keillor-Dunn threatened for the visitors, having a shot saved by Zander Clark.

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Ross County should be unbeaten - Owen Coyle

Sixth-placed St Johnstone remain four points above County, who are eighth, with Hibernian moving up to fifth with victory over Hearts.

Both sides at McDiarmid Park were keen to test the opposing defences early on with a series of deep crosses. Steven Anderson, back from suspension, connected with Brian Easton's delivery but Fox was able to gather without too much effort.

At the other end Thomas Mikkelsen was proving a handful for Saints but was ably marshalled by the home defence with Joe Shaughnessy, who captained the side despite regular skipper Anderson's return, in particular looking extremely strong.

The best opportunity for a goal in the first half came for the home side. Scougall did well to control the ball on the edge of the box to swivel and fire in an effort that looked destined for the bottom corner. Fox, though, dived low to his left to push the ball around the post.

Scott Fox
Fox impressed but had to be replaced after 76 minutes

Saints top scorer Michael O'Halloran was having one of his quieter nights and was forced off just before the break through injury with David Wotherspoon coming on.

Tommy Wright's words of wisdom at half-time spurred the home players into early action in the second period.

Easton's cross was met by the head of Paton but a terrific diving save by Fox denied the home side an opener.

And a minute later Aaron Comrie was sent through by Blair Alston but the 20-year-old blasted wide of the gaping goal.

Craig Curran replaced Mikkelsen and came close to heading the Staggies in front but his effort was cleared away by Davidson as the ball headed towards the bottom corner.

The game was beginning to flow from end to end and Keillor-Dunn warmed the palms of Clark from inside the area.

County were forced to replace Fox when he suffered an innocuous injury from his own clearance with McCarey taking his place between the sticks.

Saints finished the game the stronger with Easton heading over from close range as the Perth side's wait for a goal stretched to more than six hours.

Post-match reaction

St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright: "We are not having many breaks in front of goal at the moment. That was evident tonight with the chances we created.

"I'm really pleased with the performance with a clean sheet and a good response.

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Wright explains Saints captain change

"We have also conceded too many goals recently and when you are not scoring you are going to lose games so the thing was to stop the rot and to get a point and have 15 points after 11 games its a satisfactory start."

Ross County manager Owen Coyle: "We knew it was going to be a hard fought game. They are a good side and have shown consistency over the past few years.

"I knew they would be hurt by a couple of recent results and I knew they would be looking at a reaction for Tommy.

"I thought we played a lot of good football at times but if we want to progress we need to do more of that. We created some good chances and if young Davis Keillor-Dunn takes an extra touch rather than take it first time he probably passes it into the corner. As it is the keeper makes a really good save.

"At times we had to stand up in defence with balls coming into the box and sometimes some direct play but that is what this league brings, different style of football."

Line-ups

St Johnstone

  • 12Clark
  • 14Comrie
  • 5Shaughnessy
  • 6Anderson
  • 24Easton
  • 4AlstonSubstituted forCraigat 82'minutes
  • 8Davidson
  • 18Paton
  • 21Scougall
  • 9MacLeanSubstituted forCumminsat 71'minutes
  • 11O'HalloranSubstituted forWotherspoonat 42'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Mannus
  • 3Tanser
  • 10Wotherspoon
  • 17Johnstone
  • 26Craig
  • 28Gilchrist
  • 29Cummins

Ross County

  • 1FoxSubstituted forMcCareyat 76'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 3Naismith
  • 2FraserBooked at 59mins
  • 15Davies
  • 28van der Weg
  • 9DowSubstituted forGardyneat 68'minutes
  • 8ChowBooked at 68mins
  • 17Draper
  • 25O'BrienBooked at 90mins
  • 40Keillor-Dunn
  • 19MikkelsenSubstituted forCurranat 53'minutes

Substitutes

  • 6Kelly
  • 7Gardyne
  • 10Schalk
  • 11Curran
  • 18Lindsay
  • 22Mckay
  • 31McCarey
Referee:
Barry Cook
Attendance:
2,267

Match Stats

Home TeamSt JohnstoneAway TeamRoss County
Possession
Home35%
Away65%
Shots
Home13
Away6
Shots on Target
Home5
Away3
Corners
Home7
Away6
Fouls
Home8
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, St. Johnstone 0, Ross County 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 0, Ross County 0.

Attempt missed. Brian Easton (St. Johnstone) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Booking

Aaron McCarey (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Marcus Fraser.

Booking

Jim O'Brien (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Jim O'Brien (Ross County).

Liam Craig (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Foul by Michael Gardyne (Ross County).

Aaron Comrie (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Ross Draper.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Liam Craig replaces Blair Alston.

Kenny van der Weg (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone).

Foul by Marcus Fraser (Ross County).

Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Joe Shaughnessy.

Attempt missed. David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from very close range is just a bit too high.

Foul by Davis Keillor-Dunn (Ross County).

David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Aaron McCarey replaces Scott Fox because of an injury.

Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Andrew Davies (Ross County).

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Graham Cummins replaces Steven MacLean.

Andrew Davies (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Steven MacLean (St. Johnstone).

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Michael Gardyne replaces Ryan Dow.

Attempt missed. Stefan Scougall (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.

Booking

Tim Chow (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Attempt saved. Davis Keillor-Dunn (Ross County) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Attempt blocked. Craig Curran (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Booking

Marcus Fraser (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Marcus Fraser (Ross County).

Steven MacLean (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Aaron Comrie.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Craig Curran replaces Thomas Mikkelsen.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Brian Easton.

Attempt missed. Aaron Comrie (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic97202151623
2Aberdeen97201661023
3Rangers95222011917
4Motherwell95131511416
5Hibernian104421513216
6St Johnstone114341315-215
7Hearts114341012-215
8Ross County113261017-711
9Hamilton112271421-78
10Dundee102261119-88
11Partick Thistle111461019-97
12Kilmarnock9135713-66
View full Scottish Premiership table

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