Match ends, Dundee United 2, St Mirren 1.
Dundee United progressed to the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup with a deserved win against St Mirren.
Nadir Ciftci crossed for Ryan Gauld to edge the hosts ahead in the 21st minute but Kenny McLean levelled from the spot five minutes later after being fouled.
St Mirren goalkeeper Marian Kello kept United at bay with fine saves to deny Gary Mackay-Steven then Ciftci.
But Ciftci was to have the last word, heading home a Mackay-Steven cross five minutes after the break.
Jackie McNamara's side, who claim their first win of 2014, .
The fifth-round tie at Tannadice provided the platform for Cameroon international Eric Djemba-Djemba to make his St Mirren debut and it was the Paisley side who threatened first.
Former United striker Steven Thompson exposed some sloppy defending when he chested down a long ball and volleyed straight at goalkeeper Radoslaw Cierzniak.
Tangerines captain Stuart Armstrong tested Kello moments later and United thought they were in on goal again when the skipper released Mackay-Steven but Darren McGregor's tackle suppressed the danger.
However, St Mirren were not so robust when Ciftci raced away from Djemba-Djemba and centred for Gauld to apply the scoring touch.
The Buddies had fallen out of the game by that stage but an injection of pace from McLean changed the complexion of the first half.
The midfielder burst forward and got in between Paul Paton and Mark Wilson to draw a foul from the latter. And McLean could scarcely have been more composed as he passed the ball into the net from 12 yards.
Mackay-Steven was getting a lot of joy behind the St Mirren defence and only the prowess of Kello denied the winger a goal on the volley.
And the keeper made another terrific save after Ciftci had headed Armstrong's teasing delivery on target.
But Ciftci did find the net early in the second half, heading in Mackay-Steven's hanging cross.
McNamara's men were keen to put the tie to bed and Gauld's impressive shot on the turn was touched over by Kello.
Gary Teale replaced Djemba-Djemba and the former Scotland winger's free-kick delivery supplied St Mirren's best chance of a second leveller.
Thompson made the right connection with a powerful header but Cierzniak was equally alert to make the save.
McGregor fired wide following another set piece as time began to run out for the visitors.
United had one final effort, with Kello palming substitute Ryan Dow's shot on the run.
- 26RobertsonBooked at 24mins
- 8RankinBooked at 77mins
- 21CiftciSubstituted forEl Alaguiat 88'minutes
- 19GauldSubstituted forGomisat 88'minutes
- 10ArmstrongSubstituted forDowat 75'minutes
- 29El Alagui
- 24NewtonSubstituted forCampbellat 85'minutes
- 6GoodwinBooked at 70mins
- 99Djemba-DjembaBooked at 49minsSubstituted forTealeat 71'minutes
- 9ThompsonBooked at 17mins
- 11McLeanBooked at 52mins
- 2van Zanten
- Craig Thomson
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Dundee United 2, St Mirren 1.
John Rankin (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Darren McGregor (St Mirren).
Foul by Ryan Dow (Dundee United).
Sean Kelly (St Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by Marián Kello.
Attempt saved. Ryan Dow (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.
Substitution, Dundee United. Morgaro Gomis replaces Ryan Gauld.
Substitution, Dundee United. Farid El Alagui replaces Nadir Ciftci.
Foul by Nadir Ciftci (Dundee United).
Darren McGregor (St Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Substitution, St Mirren. Adam Campbell replaces Conor Newton.
Attempt missed. Darren McGregor (St Mirren) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left.
Foul by Paul Paton (Dundee United).
Kenny McLean (St Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.
Corner, St Mirren. Conceded by Radoslaw Cierzniak.
Attempt saved. Steven Thompson (St Mirren) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.
Foul by Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United).