It’s been three and a half years since St Mirren have won away in the top tier of Scottish football. Could they do so against Livingston, in what would have been a second tier fixture last season?
Gary Holt’s Livi made three changes after they had allowed Kilmarnock to take top spot, being beaten 2-0 at Rugby Park. Nicky Cadden was replaced by Keaghan Jacobs with Ryan Hardie coming in up front for his first Premiership start this season. Steve Lawson dropped to the bench.
Oran Kearney’s St Mirren were able to depend on Simeon Jackson again following his return from suspension. He was one of two changes following the Buddies’ draw in the capital with Hibs as he replaced Danny Mullen to partner the free scoring Adam Hammill. Jack Baird came into defence in place of Kyle Magennis with Lee Hodson moving into midfield.
Adam the architect found Alfie
Steven Lawless was first to have a go following Ryan Hardie’s blocked shot but he fizzed an effort just over the crossbar before Ryan Edwards would be fouled by Ricki Lamie in a wide position to give the Buddies their first chance of the match.
A position which seemed of no real threat, Adam Hammill sent in an inviting cross for Alfie Jones to nod into the ground and it bounced up and into the far corner, past Liam Kelly, to give St Mirren the lead. The centre back, on loan from Southampton, grabbing the first senior goal of his career.
All to play for
Uncharacteristically, Livingston had conceded from a set piece. They went into half time trailing, a big performance required to turn things around into their favour.
Less than five minutes into the second half, they’d draw level. Scott Pittman striking across Danny Rogers, who should’ve done better in keeping it out. An awkward shot to keep out but the Aberdeen loanee was too slow to get down and attempt to save.
Patiently probing in possession
Ryan Hardie would tuck home from close range to give the Lions the lead. After seeking the right pass, Livingston did really well in order to retain possession. Declan Gallagher would eventually receive on the overlap, searching for another yellow shirt.
Scott Pittman would receive at the back post and after his shot was blocked, it fell perfectly to Hardie who, from about 10 yards, smashed home. The former Saints loanee coming back to haunt his former club, giving Livingston the lead.
Substitute Sibbald seals the win
Jack McMillan sent a looping header onto the crossbar with Rogers off his line from a free kick before Craig Sibbald would seal all three points for Livingston after he tucked home the rebound from a Scott Pittman shot. The attacking midfielder’s first goal for the Lions since arriving from Falkirk.
The performance wasn’t pretty but Livi won’t mind. A busy week sees them travel up to Aberdeen in midweek before hosting Hearts in a Friday night match. As for St Mirren, the new basement boys, they welcome Aberdeen themselves to Paisley looking to move off bottom spot.