Match ends, St. Johnstone 2, Dundee United 1.
St Johnstone recovered from having goalkeeper Allan Mannus sent off in the first half to come from behind and beat Dundee United at McDiarmid Park.
Mannus was dismissed for barging into Billy McKay in the box, with the on-loan striker beating Zander Clark with the subsequent penalty.
Saints were level when Liam Craig found Graham Cummins with a corner, and his towering header found the net.
Substitute Simon Lappin lobbed Luis Zwick for a dramatic winner.
St Johnstone followed up their impressive 3-1 League Cup win at Rangers in midweek by making it seven home games against United unbeaten.
Defeat leaves the visitors with five points from their opening nine games, 12 points fewer than at this stage last season, but they only have themselves to blame having squandered both the lead and a numerical advantage.
It was St Johnstone who set the pace in the opening 10 minutes - Michael O'Halloran getting free on the right to fire in a powerful cross which just evaded Cummins.
The first save of match came when Adam Taggart pounced at the edge of the six-yard box, but Mannus dealt with it.
The goalkeeper's next involvement was his last.
Tam Scobbie was short with a back header into the box and could only watch as McKay reached the ball first. Mannus bundled over the United striker and referee Bobby Madden correctly pointed to the spot and brought out the red card.
O'Halloran was withdrawn to allow the introduction of substitute goalkeeper Clark, whose first act on his St Johnstone debut was to face the penalty, which McKay drilled home.
The home fans voiced their disapproval at the red card, but they would have been satisfied by the endeavour shown by their 10 men, who ended the first half the stronger side and began the second in the same way.
Cummins looked the most likely goalscorer for Saints, and he duly pulled them level by heading home Craig's corner after Clark saved superbly from John Souttar.
Saints surged forward in the belief they could score another, and substitute Lappin cleverly lobbed Zwick to give them the winner their play merited.
United responded after falling behind, but their renewed urgency failed to bring an equaliser.
- 1MannusBooked at 23mins
- 7MillarSubstituted forWotherspoonat 67'minutes
- 8DavidsonBooked at 43mins
- 26CraigBooked at 87mins
- 29O'HalloranSubstituted forClarkat 24'minutes
- 9MacLeanBooked at 47minsSubstituted forLappinat 77'minutes
- 17DurnanBooked at 57mins
- 4SouttarSubstituted forConnollyat 74'minutes
- 22FraserBooked at 37minsSubstituted forDowat 58'minutes
- 29TaggartSubstituted forBilateat 58'minutes
- Bobby Madden
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 2, Dundee United 1.
Attempt missed. Mario Bilate (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.
Joe Shaughnessy (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Aidan Connolly (Dundee United).
Attempt missed. John Rankin (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.
Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by David Wotherspoon.
Attempt missed. Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right.
Simon Lappin (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by John Rankin (Dundee United).
Liam Craig (St. Johnstone) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Ryan Dow (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Liam Craig (St. Johnstone).
Foul by Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone).
John Rankin (Dundee United) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Goal! St. Johnstone 2, Dundee United 1. Simon Lappin (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Graham Cummins.
Attempt saved. Billy McKay (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Attempt missed. Aidan Connolly (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.
Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by Liam Craig.
Substitution, St. Johnstone. Simon Lappin replaces Steven MacLean.