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    St Mirren -V- Inverness CT - Report



    Inverness took a point in a determined battle with St Mirren. Had it not been for three or four remarkable saves from Dean Brill it could have been a different story but he single handedly kept the Buddies out, especially in the first half. We perked up a bit in the second half but neither side really got to grips with the inclement weather and defences were generally on top. Immortal Howden Ender has theis report from Paisley.........

    Mr. Hughes may have appreciated his Fort George experience earlier in the week as the weather conditions in Paisley must have been just as bad if not worse. The wind appeared to change direction intermittently throughout the game. Unfortunately I don't think that we can use the weather as the only reason that this game turned in to a rather dour, unattractive and scrappy affair. We had two "form" teams battling it out against each other and they simply cancelled each other out. It also has to be said that Saint Mirren also came across as a much improved outfit and they could have pinched it if they had taken their opportunities in a first half that they dominated. Otherwise the other reasons for the stalemate were Dean Brill, two teams who were mainly ineffective in the last third, were terrible at delivering that final telling cross or pass and became trapped in a game mainly played between the two 18 yard lines.

    Much of the pre match talk was about the appointment of Yogi and the potential effect on the team. Interesting to see that Yogi stated that he had felt "trepidation and anxiety" prior to the match but his observed "togetherness" factor shone brightly through the dark Paisley skies. Undoubtedly a game that had to be got rid off and a point in the end was gratefully accepted if not fully deserved.

    The day started in the Canal Bar at Paisley and the initiation to Juanjo Away of wee Angus Riach. He appeared to thoroughly enjoy the initiation ceremony of being cuddled and carried by IHE and King Beastie - but then again, who wouldn't. Then it was off to the palatial Alamo Bar and the only surprising negative of the day - not only were the pies warm but they were also grease free and did not allow for torrents of fat to spill on to the chin. The standards in that establishment have gone down.

    So off to the game and a healthy away support, vociferous throughout as ever, attempting to turn out some new Yogi ditties. Yogi as he had warned remained in the Main Stand and allowed Shearer and Kellacher to take the lead. You have to take your hats off to the Saintee in the main Stand with the blue training top who stood up and waved back every time that "Yogi, Yogi, give us a wave" emanated from the away support.

    The first half went on for ever as Saint Mirren took an early control. In previous weeks the clean sheets were as much accountable to the defensive unit but this was clearly down to the goalkeeping finesse of Dean Brill. He mad four fine stops in the first half, three being in the excellent category - two from Thompson, the second tipped on to the bar - and a free kick by Newton. Would need to see the incident again but Josh Meekings for a lunge just on half time but Mr. Murray kept his cards in his pocket but Josh should have been closer to a red card. That was a poor display overall from both the referee and his assistants and they awarded some bizarre, incorrect decisions either way. We never really got going and our final ball was simply atrocious. It was indeed a relief that we went in level and goalless.

    Half Time 0-0

    The second half was more enjoyable as we began to contest more but frankly it looked like a potential stalemate from a long time before the final whistle. Again the final balls were poor and chances were lean. We hit the post with 20 minutes left from what looked like a combination of headers from Marley and McKay. The game then petered out although most of the game was at our end in the last ten minutes, highlighted only by a Saintee penalty claim which was laughable.

    Full Time 0-0

    And Yogi came on to the pitch and offered the faithful a "thank you" wave. There were positives and negatives to be gleamed but four clean sheets in a row is not to be sneezed at and extends our unbeaten run and second spot in the SPL. I would give the Man of the Match award to Dean Brill although Richie Foran put in as good a performance as he has ever done. Warren was my third pick and Marley is getting better and better every game. I am not really sure whether to applaud or admonish Gary about his professional courtesy in not getting Thompson booked if not dismissed. Gary had earlier been carded for a nothing "duel" with Thompson. Although it was not a red card it was at least a feckin yellow. Josh was steady if not overly involved. Draper appeared to struggle at times and Doran had one of his "off days". I still am not sure as to what Nicky Ross's role is and the forever in motion McKay simply lacked support or provision. Not utilising a substitution was also frustrating.



    Still a point away when not playing at your best must be a bonus. Must have given Yogi a few thoughts and will be interesting to see if there are any changes at Tynecastle. To assist Mr. Hughes in his decision making may I suggest that he initially has to make a very difficult decision about the left back position. Graeme Shinnie is not a right back. He may well be solid and reliable in that position but he is considerably more effective on his left foot. Tremarco has not put a foot wrong but he is not in the Shinnie class. To me the decision is to who plays right back - Tremarco or Raven. Then there is wee Billy, Nicky Ross and Aaron Doran. I have a hunch that Mr. Hughes would favour a 4-4-2 and a target man up front. Toby is the only one who hits the target man role but I am not sure whether he is up to it. Foran to me is the answer with Ross and Draper in central midfield.





    Date: 07.12.2013 Venue: St Mirren Park, Paisley Attendance: 3305

    Referee: Calum Murray


    St Mirren: 0

    Lineup:  Kello, Naismith, McAusland, Newton, Kelly, Goodwin, McGregor, McGinn, Thompson, McGowan (Harkins 79), McLean

    Subs (not used): Dilo, Van Zanten, Reilly, Grainger, Mair, Caprice

    Scorers: none

    Booked: McGowan (40)

    Sent Off: none

    Inverness CT: 0

    Lineup: Brill, Shinnie, Warren, Meekings, McKay, Draper, Foran, Doran, Ross, Watkins, Tremarco

    Subs (not used): Esson, Raven, Devine, Greenhalgh, Williams, Polworth, Agdestein

    Scorers: none

    Booked: Tremarco (9), Warren (40)

    Sent Off: none

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