Match ends, St. Mirren 1, Livingston 0.
St Mirren 1-0 Livingston: Richard Tait marks debut with winner
Livingston head coach Gary Holt urged his players to "put the work in" after their opening day defeat by St Mirren.
Richard Tait's debut goal gave the Paisley side a winning start to the Scottish Premiership season.
Craig Sibbald and Alan Forrest almost levelled for the visitors before the former was forced off injured on a frustrating day for Livingston.
"Go and grab the game by the scruff, not wait and watch somebody else do it," said Holt.
"I don't think we deserved to win the game, I don't think we deserved to lose it.
"We have to put the work in and I don't think we put the work in first half to win the game."
The lack of supporters and match practice clearly had an impact, but Jamie McGrath sparked the game into life with a lovely chip into the Livingston box to find Tait, who had stayed forward following a set play and was well-placed to divert into the net.
Sibbald's shot off the outside of a post, Forrest's saved effort after he had skipped in between two defenders, and a Jon Guthrie header over were the visitors' best efforts but on the whole they struggled to convert pressure into chances.
Tait almost added an assist to his goal when his cross eventually found its way to substitute Junior Morias, who struck the frame of the goal from near the penalty spot.
A possible handball shout against Sam Foley followed an earlier penalty appeal against Tait, with referee Don Robertson allowing play to continue on both occasions.
Man of the match - Richard Tait
What did we learn?
St Mirren's summer signings of Alnwick and seasoned Premiership campaigners Marcus Fraser, Joe Shaughnessy and Tait may have given their back line a new look but the tactical approach from Jim Goodwin is unchanged. His side gave little away at the back and are always looking to counter attack.
Livingston, too, have changed little since March but, on this evidence, Forrest and Sibbald will need to offer Lyndon Dykes more support in attack if the coveted striker is to better last season's goal tally of 11.
What did they say?
St Mirren manager Jim Goodwin: "It wasn't pretty but to keep a clean sheet is very pleasing.
"It's the most confident I've felt on the touchline. My two centre-halves were outstanding in particular. We can do better on the ball. Today was about digging out a result."
Livingston head coach Gary Holt: "It's the first game. A wake-up call first and foremost. Second half we were in the ascendancy.
"It was certainly a handball from Foley at the end. On another day, the decision goes for you. But we don't look for excuses. The lack of fans is an excuse."
St Mirren are the season's first competitive visitors to Rangers' Ibrox Stadium next Sunday, while Livingston play their first home league match against Hibernian on Saturday.
- 5McCarthyBooked at 13mins
- 2TaitBooked at 90mins
- 14MacPhersonBooked at 79mins
- 10McAllisterSubstituted forMoriasat 61'minutes
- 11DurmusSubstituted forThorvaldssonat 77'minutes
- 29Taylor-SinclairSubstituted forSoudaat 83'minutes
- 10SibbaldSubstituted forRobinsonat 68'minutes
- 25AmbroseBooked at 90mins
- 11ForrestSubstituted forKouider-Aissaat 61'minutesBooked at 84mins
- Don Robertson
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, St. Mirren 1, Livingston 0.
Attempt saved. Scott Pittman (Livingston) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Foul by Aymen Souda (Livingston).
Sam Foley (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Efe Ambrose (Livingston) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Efe Ambrose (Livingston).
Junior Morias (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Richard Tait (St. Mirren) is shown the yellow card.
Scott Pittman (Livingston) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Sam Foley (St. Mirren).
Foul by Nicky Devlin (Livingston).
Jonathan Obika (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Jon Guthrie (Livingston) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jonathan Obika (St. Mirren).
Attempt missed. Joe Shaughnessy (St. Mirren) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Cameron MacPherson with a cross following a set piece situation.
Foul by Marvin Bartley (Livingston).
Richard Tait (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Salim Kouider-Aissa (Livingston) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Salim Kouider-Aissa (Livingston).