Dunfermline Athletic

Fixtures : 2020-2021 : St Johnstone

Tue, 15th Dec 2020 Kick Off: 19:45

Dunfermline 1 St Johnstone 1

Tuesday, 15th Dec 2020

Betfred Cup Quarter Final: Fraser Murray starts in place of Kevin O’Hara. Shaun Rooney (94) 0-1: Iain Wilson (113) 1-1: St Johnstone go through 4-3 on penalties

It was the nineteenth time that Dunfermline has reached the quarter-final stage of the League Cup competition since it started in 1946.  It was also be the 27th match at the quarter-final stage for Dunfermline since the early years of the competition saw matches played over two legs, home and away.

St Johnstone were opponents for the tenth time in this competition but never before at this the last eight stage. Their manager Callum Davidson made four changes from the side that lost 2-1 to Livingston. On to the bench went Jamie McCart, Danny McNamara, Craig Bryson and Stevie May making way for the return of Callum Booth, Shaun Rooney, Liam Craig and Murray Davidson.

Stevie Crawford made one change to his starting eleven with on loan Hibee Fraser Murray replacing Kevin O’Hara.

St Johnstone in their yellow away shirt were out before the home side and it was the Premiership club who kicked off attacking the goal in front of the McCathie Stand. Dunfermline faced up 4-1-4-1 with Kerr McInroy playing in front of the back four and Declan McManus upfront.

The first threat for the Fifers in fifth minute came from a neat cross in from Ryan Dow that former Par Shaun Rooney headed away. St Johnstone countered winning a corner on the left that Liam Craig sent deep for David Wotherspoon to meet and the Pars keeper did well to keep out the netbound shot.

Scott Tanser volleyed an attempt wide right in eleven minutes as Dunfermline continued to be pinned back in their own half. Rooney glanced a corner from the left wide right and Owain Fôn Williams had to react to stop a Wotherspoon effort in 18 minutes.

St Johnstone were in charge and Dunfermline had all the defending to do but the pressure was taken off the defence after the Pars were awarded a free kick 25 yards out on the right side. Dom Thomas delivered a teasing ball in towards the six yard box but as no one made contact Zander Clark turned the ball around his right hand post.

Thomas’ 27th minute corner was turned behind by Liam Gordon and from Thomas’ next delivery the Saintees headed clear. Liam Craig was next to test Fon Williams powering forward to get in a shot that the keeper took with a second take.

Ten minutes from the break Wotherspoon was able to get another cross in from the right and Murray Davidson headed over the bar from close in. Gordon headed wide when Craig sent over the next corner from the right and at the other end Fraser Murray fed Down who slipped McManus through but his shot from 20 yards out was well wide right.

With the half time stats showing 70% possession to the visitors and eight shots to the Pars one, there was no doubt which side enjoyed the first half most.

Half time: Dunfermline 0 St Johnstone 0

Chris Kane got in the first shot of the second half in its third minute but Fon Williams had it covered as it went outside his right hand post. The Pars first opportunity of the half should have come two minutes later but after making the breakthrough McManus final pass to Thomas was misplaced.

Fôn Williams held Gordon’s header from a 56th minute corner and Kane had an effort blocked before Thomas sent his delivery behind from a corner on the left. Kyle Turner blasted a left footed shot on target from 20 yards out but Gordon blocked. Thomas followed up with a cross that Booth cleared.

Lewis Mayo came on for Aaron Comrie in 64 minutes and could have scored with his first touch. In the first real signs of shakiness in the St Johnstone box McManus and then Thomas had attempts but it was the sub who drove the ball low on target requiring a timely block.

Three minutes later Thomas tried a chip from the edge of the box and was only marginally too high. This was much better stuff from Dunfermline and they did look a danger to the Premiership team.

Kevin O’Hara replaced Declan McManus in 71 minutes but with three Saints subs on they pushed up again and the Pars defence had to head away a couple of crosses.

As the regulation 90 minutes slipped away Dow forced a free kick on the right but F Murray’s high ball in was headed back across goal by Watson but cleared. Extra time would be required to separate the teams.

Full time: Dunfermline 0 St Johnstone 0

Four minutes into extra time St Johnstone scored. After a multitude of passes, Tanser swept the ball high over from the left and ROONEY controlled it at the far post and lashed it past Fon Williams into the bottom left. 0-1

May had a good effort deflected off McInroy just outside the right post five minutes later. The corner was blown up for pushing but next minute Fon Williams had to beat away a well struck effort from May.

It was all St Johnstone at this stage and Hendry fired another narrowly over the Pars crossbar. With 103 minutes gone Hendry crossed for May in front of goal. You had to think he must score but he failed to get the connection, Rooney collected and fired across the goal.

In the fifteenth minute Lewis McCann was a sub for Dom Thomas, coming on in a match against his brother Ali. Iain Wilson was a sub for Fraser Murray at the half time break in extra time.

Dunfermline had a go after the teams changed ends, Dow getting into the left side of the Saints box only for his final ball to be cut out. In tenth minute of the second half of extra time the final Pars sub brought joy, and on his birthday too.

Mayo sent the ball on from the right, Euan Murray flicked it on with his head and there were appeals for a penalty as Dow and Jason Kerr got caught up in front of goal but WILSON drilled the ball low into the bottom left to make it 1-1.

Lewis McCann almost became the hero as he broke into the left side of the visitors box but Clark saved.

Penalties followed to decide which team would be on the semi final draw. It was ten years since Dunfermline had lost their last penalty shoot out against Queen of the South. Successes had since come against Hearts and against Borehamwood but this time the luck would run out. The penalties were taken at the away end, Dunfermline first

1. Paul Watson right footed to left, keeper dived to his right saved.
2. Craig Conway right footed to right 0-1
3. Iain Wilson right footed to bottom left 1-1
4. Stevie May scored bottom left despite OFW going right way. 2-1
5. Kyle Turner right footed bottom left. 2-2
6. Callum Henry hit crossbar 2-2
7. Ryan Dow powers ball to left 3-2
8. Callum Booth scored bottom left 3-3
9. Kevin O’Hara to keeper’s right but saved 3-3
10. Liam Craig smashed down middle 3-4

Absolutely no disgrace in going out on penalties. It started out with total St Johnstone dominance but after 120 minutes of football Premiership manager Callum Davidson would admit that his team had been pushed all the way. Dunfermline can carry confidence and experience from their performance into their Championship challenge.

DUNFERMLINE: Owain Fôn Williams: Aaron Comrie (Lewis Mayo 64), Paul Watson, Euan Murray (c), Josh Edwards: Kerr McInroy: Fraser Murray (Iain Wilson HT et), Ryan Dow, Kyle Turner, Dom Thomas (Lewis McCann 105): Declan McManus (Kevin O’Hara 71)
SUBS NOT USED: Steven Whittaker, Matty Bowman, Miller Fenton, Lucas Berry, Cammy Gill (GK)
SCORERS: Wilson (113)
YELLOW CARD: McManus (59), Mayo (116)

ST JOHNSTONE: Zander Clark: Callum Booth, Jason Kerr (c), Liam Gordon, Shaun Rooney, Murray Davidson (Craig Conway 69), Liam Craig, Scott Tanser, David Wotherspoon (Callum Hendry 78), Ali McCann, Chris Kane (Stevie May 61)
SUBS NOT USED: Jamie McCart, Craig Bryson, Danny McNamara,Guy Melamed, Alex Ferguson, Elliott Parish (GK)
SCORERS: Rooney (94)

REFEREE: Don Robertson

NEXT MATCH: Scottish Championship (away) v Dundee, Saturday 19th December 2020, kick off 3.00pm at the Kilmac Stadium at Dens Park behind closed doors

50/50 Draw Number 100011512 won £239

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Preview St Johnstone

Tuesday, 15th Dec 2020

Betfred Cup Quarter Final (home) v St Johnstone, Tuesday 15th December 2020, kick off 7.45pm

A quarter final draw at home is a massive chance to get into a cup semi-final and get to Hampden. That’s the opinion of centre back Paul Watson who claimed “it is something to look forward to, a lot of the boys haven’t been to Hampden before. So, it’s a huge game for both clubs and one we’ll be looking forward to.”

This is the 149th meeting between these two teams, Dunfermline have won 61, drawn 21 and lost 55. The Fifers have the upper hand principally because of their performances at East End Park but the last Pars win in this fixture was back in October 2001. St Johnstone are undefeated in their last six visits to East End Park.

Milestones (home) v St Johnstone
Last Victory | 27/10/01 | 2-1 | SPL
Last Defeat | 24/12/11 | 0-3 | SPL
Best Victory | 21/08/57 | 7-1 | Division 2*
Worst Defeat | 21/10/50 | 2-7 | Division 2*
Last Goalless Draw | 02/09/07 | Division 1
First Ever Meeting | 24/04/13 | 1-0 | Division 2*
*Pre league reconstruction

League Cup Record v St Johnstone

Total | P9 | W3 | D1 | L5 | F18 | A22 |
Home | P4 | W2 | D0 | L2 | F9 | A7 |
Away | P5 | W1 | D1 | L3 | F9 | A15 |

Previous League Cup Ties v St Johnstone

28/10/03 | A | St Johnstone 3-2 Dunfermline | L |
25/08/71 | H | Dunfermline 0-2 St Johnstone | L |
18/08/71 | A | St Johnstone 1-1 Dunfermline | D |
01/09/65 | A | St Johnstone 3-1 Dunfermline | L |
18/08/65 | H | Dunfermline 5-1 St Johnstone | W |
31/08/49 | A | St Johnstone 2-3 Dunfermline | W |
17/08/49 | H | Dunfermline 1-2 St Johnstone | L |
19/10/46 | H | Dunfermline 3-2 St Johnstone | W |
28/09/46 | A | St Johnstone 6-2 Dunfermline | L |

Last Meeting in League Cup
St Johnstone 3 Dunfermline 2
Tuesday 28th October 2003, McDiarmid Park

Less than ten minutes of the game had elapsed before the home team took the lead. Derek Stillie rushed out of his box to clear a dangerous ball and managed to head it away. Unfortunately for the Pars it dropped to Simon DONNELLY, who lobbed it over the Pars keeper as he scrambled back to his goal line. 1-0

Saints went two up in 70th minute when failure to deal with a corner kick allowed Darren DODS to arrive unchallenged at the back post and nod home with ease. The game was killed off completely just three minutes later when once again a ball to the back post proved troublesome for the Pars. MacDONALD had all the time in the world to finish and made no mistake in putting his team three up.

With ten minutes remaining the Pars grabbed what looked like being a solitary consolation goal. Latching onto a through ball, Stevie CRAWFORD turned a half-chance into a wonder goal, lobbing Cuthbert from long range.

Three minutes later Gary Dempsey`s cross was headed clear by Dods but only as far as the edge of the box. Darren YOUNG let fly with a superb shot and the Pars had a second wonderful goal.

The Pars last real chance to level matters ended with a decent claim for handball in the box against Bernard. The referee had already turned away stronger claims than this though and it was no great surprise to see him ignore this one as well. In the end, the late flurry by the Pars did nothing but add a little bit of respectability to the score line that their performance barely merited.

ST JOHNSTONE: Kevin Cuthbert; John Robertson, Ross Forsyth, Paul Bernard, Darren Dods, Ian Maxwell, Peter MacDonald (Chris Hay 80), Mark Robertson, Keigan Parker, Simon Donnelly, Brian McLaughlin (Eddie Malone 83)
SUBS NOT USED: Mixu Paatelainen, Ryan Stevenson, Craig Nelson (GK)

DUNFERMLINE: Derek Stillie: Lee Bullen (Gary Dempsey 67), Scott Wilson, Scott Thomson, David Grondin (Billy Mehmet 73), Barry Nicholson, Darren Young, Gary Mason, Sean Kilgannon (Aaron Labonte HT), Stevie Crawford, Craig Brewster
SUBS NOT USED: Richie Byrne, Marco Ruitenbeek (GK)

Recent Form

These teams have just seen long unbeaten runs end, both Dunfermline and St Johnstone were undefeated in their last eleven matches prior to Saturday.

Morton (H) L 1-2
Raith Rovers (H) D 2-2
Arbroath (A) W 3-1
Hearts (H) W 2-1
Clyde (H) W 3-2
Ayr United (A) D 0-0

Livingston (H) L 1-2
Celtic (A) D 1-1
Motherwell (A) W 2-1
Hibernian (A) D 2-2
Motherwell (H) D 1-1
Peterhead (A) W 3-1

Current League Stats

Championship League Position: 2nd
League Points: 14
Goal Difference: +6
League Record: P7 W4 2 L1 GF15 GA9
Last Six Match Form: DWWWDL

Premiership League Position: 9th
League Points: 17
Goal Difference: -7
League Record: P17 W4 D5 L8 GF15 GA22
Last Six Match Form: WDDWDL

Stevie Crawford looked ahead to this cup tie:-

“Being in the quarter final of the competition is great, then to get a home tie at East End even though we don’t supporters. I went to watch St Johnstone against Celtic on Sunday, I was very impressed with them. They were well organised, whether they play that formation against us?

“They played 3-4-3, 5-4-1 formation against a Celtic team that is not playing with a lot of confidence. Don’t take anything away from St Johnstone, they were very good on the day. They worked hard as a team and you can see why they are on the run that they are on at the moment.”

Last Time Out

Owain Fôn Williams: Aaron Comrie, Paul Watson, Euan Murray (c), Josh Edwards: Ryan Dow, Kyle Turner, Kerr McInroy (Lewis McCann 83) Dom Thomas: Kevin O’Hara (Fraser Murray 62), Declan McManus
SUBS NOT USED: Iain Wilson, Lewis Mayo, Matty Bowman, Miller Fenton, Cammy Gill (GK)

ST JOHNSTONE (v Livingston): Zander Clark: Scott Tanser, Jamie McCart, Liam Gordon, Dan McNamara, Jason Kerr (Shaun Rooney 72), David Wotherspoon, Craig Bryson (Davidson 84), Ali McCann, Chris Kane (Callum Hendry 68), Stevie May (Guy Melamed 68).
SUBS NOT USED: Craig Conway, Liam Craig, Callum Booth, Alex Ferguson, Elliott Parish (GK)

Referee will be Don Robertson.

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