Scottish Premiership
St Mirren1Hamilton3

St Mirren 1-3 Hamilton Accies: James Keatings inspires win over 10-man hosts

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Highlights: St Mirren 1-3 Hamilton Academical

A James Keatings-inspired win over 10-man St Mirren lifted Hamilton five points clear of their second bottom hosts in the Scottish Premiership.

The striker set up Dougie Imrie and Ziggy Gordon for two first-half goals against the run of play after being handed a rare start.

Stephen McGinn replied with a fine finish on the turn before the break.

But Keatings' superb long-range finish restored the advantage before St Mirren's Simeon Jackson was sent off.

The result does nothing to change either side's position in the table, but it moves Hamilton further clear of the relegation play-off spot and to within a point of neighbours Motherwell.

St Mirren remain three points clear of bottom side Dundee, who now have a game in hand.

Dead-ball expertise kills off St Mirren

The unchanged St Mirren looked confident early on as they sought to build on a win over Hearts that ended a run of 12 league games without a win.

As well as giving a debut to recently signed 35-year-old former Everton and Slovakia goalkeeper Jan Mucha, Martin Canning had restored Keatings for only his third start of the season.

And the former Hibernian and Hearts forward's dead-ball expertise cleaved out the opener, Imrie rising to loop his corner over everyone and into the far corner of the net.

St Mirren manager Oran Kearney, with new first-team coach Jimmy Nicholl at his side for the first time, replaced Ian McShane with Ryan Edwards in midfield.

However, it did not prevent Hamilton going further in front as, moments after goalkeeper Danny Rogers denied Imrie a second, Gordon poked in from Keatings' in-swinging free-kick.

The visitors were looking comfortable, but McGinn's fine finish at the close of the first half inspired the St Mirren to pile on the pressure in the second and had calls for a red card rejected after Gordon pulled down Jackson on his way to goal.

Keatings, though, was given too much time to collect and fire a looping left-foot drive over Rodgers from 25 yards.

He later went off injured, but any hopes St Mirren had of a comeback ended when Jackson picked up a second yellow card for a lunging challenge on Gordon.

The 10 men battled gamely on, with Danny Mullen firing against the crossbar, but by then the points were already destined for Hamilton.

Simeon Jackson
Simeon Jackson was dismissed in controversial circumstances

Hamilton surprise again, but St Mirren in trouble

BBC Scotland's Chick Young in Paisley

Hamiltno manager Canning will have another wry smile as people continue to doubt his team. We really have to stop writing them off. They managed this match perfectly and played to their strengths - namely glorious deliveries by Keatings that were capitalised upon by Imrie and Gordon before he scored a gem himself.

The post-mortem for Kearney is more depressing but equally simple. St Mirren cannot defend set-pieces and, for all the possession they had in the first half - and for a long time they were the better team - they did not threaten the Hamilton goal.

They were a shadow of the side that beat Hearts last week and were back to their previous incarnation of a team bereft of self-belief. The manager will need to be busy in the January window or the relegation quicksand has no chance of subsiding.

'Keatings is a match-winner' - reaction

Hamilton Academical manager Martin Canning: "I said before the game we were coming here to try to win and we played in that manner.

"The quality of Keatings wins you the game. We know that, if we can get him fit and get him going, he is a match winner for us at this level."

St Mirren manager Oran Kearney: "Simeon Jackson's spun Ziggy Gordon, he's in behind and he's pulled down - I'm still really struggling with how it is only a yellow. That's that big moment.

"And there is a tackle from behind on Simeon soon after that and there is no yellow. It is a hard one to take. For all the good possession we had for parts of it, we just didn't have that cutting edge."

Line-ups

St Mirren

  • 25Rogers
  • 21Hodson
  • 15Baird
  • 19Jones
  • 39Erhahon
  • 2McGinnSubstituted forMullenat 66'minutes
  • 4McGinnBooked at 6mins
  • 16McShaneSubstituted forEdwardsat 34'minutes
  • 7Magennis
  • 11JacksonBooked at 68mins
  • 77HammillSubstituted forCookeat 58'minutes

Substitutes

  • 10Smith
  • 18Mullen
  • 20Cooke
  • 26Lyness
  • 27Edwards
  • 28MacPherson
  • 35Ferdinand

Hamilton

  • 24Mucha
  • 2McGowanBooked at 61mins
  • 6Kilgallon
  • 4GordonBooked at 52minsSubstituted forTshiembeat 79'minutes
  • 25MartinBooked at 30mins
  • 18MacKinnon
  • 11Miller
  • 7Imrie
  • 3McMann
  • 10KeatingsSubstituted forBoydat 65'minutes
  • 31BrustadSubstituted forBinghamat 72'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Woods
  • 5Tshiembe
  • 9Bingham
  • 12Taiwo
  • 16Enigbokan-Bloomfield
  • 30Boyd
  • 46Sowah
Referee:
Kevin Clancy
Attendance:
4,334

Match Stats

Home TeamSt MirrenAway TeamHamilton
Possession
Home53%
Away47%
Shots
Home22
Away7
Shots on Target
Home4
Away4
Corners
Home6
Away2
Fouls
Home15
Away12

Live Text

Match ends, St. Mirren 1, Hamilton Academical 3.

Full Time

Second Half ends, St. Mirren 1, Hamilton Academical 3.

Foul by Ethan Erhahon (St. Mirren).

Mickel Miller (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Kyle Magennis (St. Mirren).

Mickel Miller (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stephen McGinn (St. Mirren).

Steven Boyd (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Jack Baird (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Rakish Bingham (Hamilton Academical).

Corner, St. Mirren. Conceded by Mickel Miller.

Foul by Cody Cooke (St. Mirren).

Darian MacKinnon (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt saved. Daniel Mullen (St. Mirren) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Daniel Mullen (St. Mirren) header from a difficult angle on the left is high and wide to the left from a direct free kick.

Cody Cooke (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Darian MacKinnon (Hamilton Academical).

Attempt missed. Ryan Edwards (St. Mirren) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

Daniel Mullen (St. Mirren) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box.

Substitution

Substitution, Hamilton Academical. Delphin Tshiembe replaces Ziggy Gordon.

Foul by Cody Cooke (St. Mirren).

Matthew Kilgallon (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Kyle Magennis (St. Mirren) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

Daniel Mullen (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ziggy Gordon (Hamilton Academical).

Attempt missed. Cody Cooke (St. Mirren) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box misses to the right.

Ryan Edwards (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Scott McMann (Hamilton Academical).

Attempt missed. Daniel Mullen (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Hamilton Academical. Rakish Bingham replaces Fredrik Brustad.

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Simeon Jackson (St. Mirren) for a bad foul.

Foul by Simeon Jackson (St. Mirren).

Ziggy Gordon (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Mirren. Daniel Mullen replaces Paul McGinn.

Substitution

Substitution, Hamilton Academical. Steven Boyd replaces James Keatings because of an injury.

Corner, St. Mirren. Conceded by Scott Martin.

Foul by Ethan Erhahon (St. Mirren).

Mickel Miller (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Cody Cooke (St. Mirren) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Booking

Aaron McGowan (Hamilton Academical) is shown the yellow card.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic139223062429
2Kilmarnock1584322121028
3Rangers1383235112427
4Hearts148241915426
5St Johnstone147341618-224
6Livingston146441410422
7Aberdeen136341613321
8Hibernian145452317619
9Motherwell144281524-914
10Hamilton1541101232-2013
11St Mirren152211929-208
12Dundee141211832-245
View full Scottish Premiership table

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