Scottish Championship
St MirrenSt Mirren3MortonGreenock Morton1

St Mirren 3-1 Greenock Morton

By Chick YoungBBC Scotland
St Mirren's Callum Gallagher celebrates with his team-mates

Lawrence Shankland's spectacular effort helped St Mirren to secure victory against their Renfrewshire rivals.

Shankland fired the hosts in front with his 10th goal of the season before Denny Johnstone restored parity just before the hour mark.

St Mirren restored their lead soon after when Callum Gallagher beat goalkeeper Derek Gaston.

Saints added to their lead in injury time as Shankland combined with Cooper to set up Stevie Mallan.

The victory takes Saints to within a point of Morton and boosts Alex Rae's side's chances of finishing fifth in the table with matches against Dumbarton and Rangers to come.

Morton, without a league win against their Renfrewshire rivals since 1999, were desperate to put that to rights as they come to the end of a season which had already ensured Championship survival.

The appeal of the fixture, meaningless outwith the possibility of Morton reaching a points total which would make them uncatchable by St Mirren, was clear with a crowd of 4,299 inside the Paisley 2021 Stadium.

Shankland scored a marvellous opener after just seven minutes, a strike from the edge of the box which flew beyond the despairing dive of Gaston.

The goal locked Saints' grip on the first half. Clarkson, back in the starting line-up, had a chance that he pulled wide. Gallagher shot past the other post - the goalie's left - and Mallan had a free kick saved.

Against all that, St Mirren keeper Jamie Langfield had a relaxing first half in the Paisley sunshine, save for a foot he had to use in an improvised save to deal with a shot from Declan McManus.

At first there was little redirection of traffic after the break despite Morton having spells of good passing. Bobby Barr, for example, was reluctant to release a shot and found himself forced wide to the by-line where his cross was blocked.

The Greenock side lacked a cutting edge but with 59 minutes they sorted that in grand style.

They launched a wonderful counter attack with Declan McManus doing the graft. Johnstone peeled off to his left and into space and McManus delivered the pass. Johnstone composed himself and produced a lovely finish.

However, within two minutes Saints were ahead again. It was sloppy defending by Morton captain Lee Kilday as his clearance landed at the feet of Gallagher who all but passed the ball in at Gaston's left post with a composed finish.

Saints decided to stick with what they had. With 14 minutes to go they replaced Gallagher with Jim Goodwin who took up a sitting role in front of the back four to nurse his team over the line.

St Mirren enhanced the victory with another goal in time added on. Morton were torn apart by Shankland and Cooper who set up Mallan to score. Job done.

Three points which saw them leapfrog Queen of the South and into sixth place in the Championship.

Line-ups

St Mirren

Formation 4-4-2

  • 12Langfield
  • 2NaismithBooked at 81mins
  • 15Baird
  • 4Webster
  • 28Irvine
  • 22GallagherSubstituted forGoodwinat 78'minutes
  • 14Mallan
  • 27QuinnSubstituted forCarswellat 82'minutes
  • 29Cooper
  • 24ClarksonSubstituted forMorganat 55'minutes
  • 25Shankland

Substitutes

  • 6Goodwin
  • 8Gow
  • 9Thompson
  • 10Carswell
  • 17Morgan
  • 33Stewart
  • 42Willison

Morton

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Gaston
  • 6Miller
  • 2KildayBooked at 52minsSubstituted forMcMullanat 65'minutes
  • 19Gasparotto
  • 17Russell
  • 7McKeeBooked at 60minsSubstituted forSamuelat 80'minutes
  • 4O'Ware
  • 8Forbes
  • 16Barr
  • 9Johnstone
  • 21McManusBooked at 86mins

Substitutes

  • 3Lamie
  • 10MacDonald
  • 18Samuel
  • 20McNeil
  • 28Quitongo
  • 33McMullan
  • 36Tennant
Referee:
William Collum
Attendance:
4,299

Match Stats

Home TeamSt MirrenAway TeamMorton
Possession
Home49%
Away51%
Shots
Home11
Away7
Shots on Target
Home7
Away2
Corners
Home3
Away2
Fouls
Home6
Away9

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, St. Mirren 3, Morton 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, St. Mirren 3, Morton 1.

  3. Goal!

    Goal! St. Mirren 3, Morton 1. Stephen Mallan (St. Mirren) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Alex Cooper.

  4. Post update

    Corner, St. Mirren. Conceded by Declan McManus.

  5. Booking

    Declan McManus (Morton) is shown the yellow card.

  6. Post update

    Corner, St. Mirren. Conceded by Luca Gasparotto.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Mirren. Stuart Carswell replaces Rocco Quinn.

  8. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Denny Johnstone (Morton) header from the centre of the box is blocked.

  9. Booking

    Jason Naismith (St. Mirren) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Jason Naismith (St. Mirren).

  11. Post update

    Paul McMullan (Morton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Morton. Alex Samuel replaces Joe McKee.

  13. Post update

    Attempt missed. Rocco Quinn (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Mirren. Jim Goodwin replaces Calum Gallagher.

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Joe McKee (Morton) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

  16. Post update

    Attempt saved. Alex Cooper (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

  17. Post update

    Alex Cooper (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Ross Forbes (Morton).

  19. Post update

    Attempt missed. Stephen Mallan (St. Mirren) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.

  20. Post update

    Gary Irvine (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.