Scottish Premiership
Ross County0St Johnstone2

Scottish Premiership: Ross County 0-2 St Johnstone

St Johnstone celebrate
Danny Swanson (left) and Chris Kane (right) were involved in both goals

Danny Swanson scored one and set up the other as St Johnstone plundered the points against Ross County in Dingwall.

Chris Kane also had a hand in both goals, being pulled down by Jay McEveley to give Swanson the chance to open the scoring with a penalty.

That came three minutes before the end of an otherwise uneventful first half.

County came back into the game after the break, but Kane fired the second from a fine Swanson through ball to secure Saints' victory.

The Perth side, who remain in fourth place in the Premiership, had arrived having gone four games unbeaten against their hosts last season.

And they left with County's run of games without a win being extended to five.

Bad news for County and Northern Ireland

Ross County's Liam Boyce is carried off injured
Liam Boyce is likely to miss Northern Ireland's World Cup qualifiers

New signings Chris Burke and Ryan Dow got late run out for County, but there was more bad news for them when striker Liam Boyce was helped off near the end.

Manager Jim McIntyre had handed teenage striker Greg Morrison a first start as replacement for injured duo Craig Curran and Alex Schalk.

Then top marksman Boyce suffered what looked like a nasty injury with only five minutes of the game to go.

The striker was involved in an accidental collision in a packed penalty area and was helped from the field at a time when McIntyre had already committed all three substitutes.

To add to Boyce's pain, it seems certain he will now miss Northern Ireland's World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and defending champions Germany.

Needless penalty conceded

County's injury jinx had struck even before a ball was kicked in anger as they also lost key defender Andrew Davies, who was injured in the warm-up, with McEveley drafted in from the bench.

Of course, the former Scotland defender has bags of experience himself, which makes it all the more painful for Staggies supporters to see the summer arrival from Sheffield United concede a needless penalty to gift the visitors the lead.

It's doubtful if even McEveley knows why he bundled Kane over in the box when the striker seemed to be going nowhere, but the result was inevitable.

Swanson sent Scott Fox the wrong way to convert his fifth spot kick of the season and edge Saints in front after an opening period in which they carried more threat.

Burke unable to turn tide

Chris Burke makes his Ross County debut
Former Scotland winger Chris Burke made his Ross County debut

Not that there was a lot of goalmouth action in the first half, but St Johnstone always looked to have the edge in terms of what little was created at that point.

The home side carried more attacking threat in the second half, but it wasn't until late in the game that they finally caused goalkeeper Zander Clark any worries.

Burke came off the bench to test the goalkeeper in the incident that led to Boyce's injury, but by then they were two goals down and really out of contention for any points.

That saw St Johnstone sweep up field, cutting the defence open for Kane to finish in some style and take them on to the 14-point mark.

Ross County manager Jim McIntyre: "We will know more about Liam's injury later on, but we think it is a medial ligament injury and we are hoping he's not out too long.

"But there is no excuses as we should have done better than we did today. There's no doubt that first half was the worst 45 minutes of the season so far.

"It wasn't good enough, as simple as that. It was really disappointing and we got what we deserved and we just have to take it on the chin.

"We would have gone fourth today if we had won, but after watching that, it is clear that we still have a lot of hard work to do."

St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright: "Really satisfied with the performance as we were as good as we have been this year and I was really pleased with the first half in particular.

"Second half, we didn't start it as we should have and we put ourselves under a bit of pressure, but we got a great second goal.

"We had a few opportunities like that and we had some great link-up play between Danny Swanson and Murray Davidson leading to Chris Kane's goal.

"I'm really pleased for him because he has been playing well and I said to him before the game that he was due a goal for the way he has been going."

Line-ups

Ross County

  • 1Fox
  • 2Fraser
  • 43Quinn
  • 5McEveley
  • 28van der Weg
  • 17FranksSubstituted forBurkeat 68'minutes
  • 4RoutisSubstituted forChowat 75'minutes
  • 8WoodsBooked at 90mins
  • 7Gardyne
  • 53MorrisonSubstituted forDowat 68'minutes
  • 10BoyceSubstituted forat 85'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Cikos
  • 9Dow
  • 12Chow
  • 16Dingwall
  • 22Burke
  • 31McCarey
  • 58Dingwall

St Johnstone

  • 12Clark
  • 19FosterBooked at 90mins
  • 14Shaughnessy
  • 6Anderson
  • 24Easton
  • 4AlstonSubstituted forWotherspoonat 66'minutes
  • 8Davidson
  • 26Craig
  • 11SwansonSubstituted forPatonat 86'minutes
  • 25Kane
  • 9MacLean

Substitutes

  • 1Mannus
  • 10Wotherspoon
  • 17Coulson
  • 18Paton
  • 20Gormley
  • 23Gordon
  • 29Cummins
Referee:
Crawford Allan
Attendance:
3,299

Match Stats

Home TeamRoss CountyAway TeamSt Johnstone
Possession
Home55%
Away45%
Shots
Home6
Away10
Shots on Target
Home4
Away6
Corners
Home5
Away6
Fouls
Home14
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, Ross County 0, St. Johnstone 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Ross County 0, St. Johnstone 2.

Booking

Martin Woods (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Martin Woods (Ross County).

David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Booking

Richard Foster (St. Johnstone) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Martin Woods (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Richard Foster (St. Johnstone).

Hand ball by Tim Chow (Ross County).

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Scott Fox.

Attempt saved. Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) header from the right side of the six yard box is saved in the top right corner.

Michael Gardyne (Ross County) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Richard Foster (St. Johnstone).

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Paul Paton replaces Danny Swanson.

Marcus Fraser (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Danny Swanson (St. Johnstone).

Liam Boyce went off injured after Ross County had used all subs.

Attempt saved. Paul Quinn (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Liam Craig.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Liam Boyce (Ross County) because of an injury.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Liam Craig.

Attempt saved. Chris Burke (Ross County) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Joe Shaughnessy.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Danny Swanson.

Foul by Jay McEveley (Ross County).

Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Chris Burke (Ross County).

Danny Swanson (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Chris Burke (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Danny Swanson (St. Johnstone).

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Tim Chow replaces Christopher Routis.

Goal!

Goal! Ross County 0, St. Johnstone 2. Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Danny Swanson.

Christopher Routis (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone).

Attempt missed. Liam Craig (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Zander Clark.

Attempt saved. Jay McEveley (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Chris Burke replaces Jonathan Franks.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Ryan Dow replaces Greg Morrison.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic76102481619
2Aberdeen8431138515
3Hearts8422147714
4St Johnstone8422118314
5Rangers83321011-112
6Motherwell82331112-19
7Ross County823379-29
8Inverness CT82331216-49
9Hamilton8143913-47
10Dundee8134812-46
11Kilmarnock8134819-116
12Partick Thistle7124711-45
View full Scottish Premiership table

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