U20s v St JohnstoneTuesday, 23rd Aug 2016
SPFL Development League: Trialist (47) 0-1: Connor McLaren (54) 1-1. Michael Paton (69) 1-2
- - Listen to coach John Potters post match thoughts
ST JOHNSTONE 1 DUNFERMLINE 2
St Johnstone kicked off in this SPFL Development League opener at McDiarmid Park. John Potter was able to include four first team squad players who were in need of match time - Callum Fordyce, Paul McMullan, Michael Paton and David Hopkirk. In addition he had a trialist wearing the number 9 shirt upfront.
Right on five minutes Paul McMullan ran in from wide to receive a wise pass from Fordyce, Continuing his momentum the former Celtic youth prodded the ball out to Reece Duncan who ran in towards the St Johnstone box before picking out the trialist whose header was kept out by the crossbar.
Next minute McMullan played David Hopkirk in on the left side of the Saints box who connected well but keeper Mark Hurst beat the ball away for a corner.
There was eight minutes on the clock when the trialist fed Hopkirk another chance but again the keeper turned the ball around his right hand post for a corner. In eleven minutes Paton managed to send another shot at goal but his 20 yard out effort hit the stanchion to the right of goal.
Having been subdued for the first quarter of an hour the Perth side broke through the Pars defence when Danny Jardine slipped the ball right for Greg Hurst to get in for a shot and it was a bit of a let off when the Saintees shot travelled just outside the far post.
George Hunter was denied the chance to capitalise in a bit of slackness in the Pars midfield, as Stuart Morrison slid in with a well timed tackle 15 yards out on 23 minutes. Back at the other end McMullan saw his 22 yard free kick turned behind for a corner on the right but when he took that and got it returned to him, he beat his man but shot at the keeper.
Twelve minutes from the break Connor McLaren tumbled Scott Lochhead and from the free kick 30 yards out McMullan chipped into the box but the all green Mark Hurst gathered. Three minutes later Hopkirk fired on target from the edge of the area but failed to get enough on his shot to trouble Hurst.
In added time, Paton had the final opportunity of the half to create a breakthrough but his free kick from the right edge of the box was headed over the bar by the Trialist. It had been nearly all Dunfermline in the first half but the sides went in all square.
Half time: St Johnstone 0 Dunfermline 0
The goal that was so long sought after in the first half took just 80 seconds of the second. Hopkirk made a strong run out of defence and on nearing the St Johnstone box passed right for Paton but the defence cut the ball out. Hopkirk regained possession and when his shot felled a defender a return from the right picked out the TRIALIST in front of goal. A fortunate break of the ball off the back of right back Cammy Lumsden set up the simplest of finishes. 0-1
The Fifers lead was to last just seven minutes as St Johnstone`s McLAREN ran in from deep to head home a long diagonal ball launched in from the left touchline. 1-1
Hopkirk connected well on a 62nd minute attempt but Hurst held and next the Pars striker sent a weighty ball across the six yard box but the defence held out again. Hoppy continued to create the danger with a cut back from the left byeline towards McMullan cut out by McCawl.
The Pars retook the lead in 69 minutes and it was just a close neat pass from McMullan that set PATON up on the top of the box and he finished well finding the right side of the net for 2-1.
Euan Horne replaced Scott Lochhead on 76 minutes before the Trialist had the chance to hit a McMullan cut back firmly at the keeper. Conner Duthie went down in a challenge on the left and St Johnstone put the ball out to permit physio Kenny Murray to come on to administer treatment. The magic worked and he was soon back on.
The Saintees began passing the ball around much more successfully and as the match entered its final five minutes the home side pushed up. When the Pars won back possession they hung on to it well. Horne forced a 90th minute corner after fine stuff between Brandon Luke and McMullan before seeing the match out.. A well deserved win .
SUBS NOT USED: Jamie Docherty, Euan O`Reilly, Jamie McKenzie, Gregor Donald, Ben McKenzie (GK)
SCORERS: McLaren (54)
DUNFERMLINE: Cammy Gill: Reece Duncan, Stuart Morrison, Callum Fordyce, Conner Duthie: Johnny Galloway: Michael Paton, Scott Lochhead (Euan Horne 76), Paul McMullan: Trialist, David Hopkirk (Brandon Luke 88).
SUBS NOT USED: Ciaran Lafferty, Robbie Crawford, Callum Smith, James Thomas, Josh Dunn (GK)
SCORERS: Trialist (47), Paton (69)
YELLOW CARD: Duthie (58)
REFEREE: Chris McNab
WEATHER: Cloudy 16C
NEXT MATCH: SFA Youth Cup (home) v Berwick Rangers. Sunday 28th August 2016, 2.00pm kick off at East End Park
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