Scottish Premiership
HamiltonHamilton Academical1St MirrenSt Mirren1

Hamilton Academical 1-1 St Mirren: Paisley side miss out on top six after late equaliser

By Clive LindsayBBC Sport Scotland

St Mirren's players were left "devastated" after a late Hamilton Academical equaliser denied them a place in the Scottish Premiership top six, says manager Jim Goodwin.

Jamie McGrath's seventh penalty kick of the season had put St Mirren in a commanding position.

But St Johnstone's late winner v Ross County - and Kyle Munro's equaliser - took them above the Paisley side.

"The season is not over, we still have a lot to play for," Goodwin said.

"Seventh has to be our target, and a run in the Scottish Cup, but right now it's very difficult to think about anything else other than the sheer disappointment. The players are devastated."

Despite the draw, Hamilton slip to the bottom of the table behind Kilmarnock, who thrashed Motherwell 4-1.

It means Motherwell - on two occasions - remain the only team that Hamilton have beaten in 13 games since the turn of the year. They are now without a win in six outings - five at home.

Much had been made about St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick's pre-season prediction thatJim Goodwin's side would finish in the top six after narrowly avoiding relegation last term.

Ridiculed by some pundits, they nevertheless began the day within touching distance and Goodwin was similarly cocksure when interviewed before kick off, saying he "expected" a victory.

Despite his suggestion that his players were confident and relaxed, and Brian Rice's assurances that Hamilton were not feeling the pressure from their own relegation plight, it was a scrappy start.

What few chances were created came St Mirren's way and, when Ilkay Durmus was subject of a wild challenge, McGrath calmly slotted his 11th goal of the season to retain his 100% record form the spot.

Although Accies improved after the break, with half-chances spurned at both ends, it looked like the Paisley side were heading for victory.

However, as news filtered through that St Johnstone had taken the lead with four minutes remaining, St Mirren were defending ever deeper. Then Scott McMann's free-kick found Munro unmarked to deliver a killer blow to the visitors' top-six hopes.

Man of the match - Richard Tait

St Mirren's Richard Tait
Right-back Tait was a constant threat for St Mirren despite disappointment at the end

What did we learn?

It is a bit of cliche about never counting Hamilton out and so it proved again. Rice's side have fallen to the bottom of the table but showed again that they can dig deep to find that bit extra that could again save them from relegation.

St Mirren will wonder how they threw away that top-six place. They will obviously have an inquiry about how Munro was unmarked for the equaliser, but they only have themselves to blame after only one win in their last eight games - five of them drawn.

What they said

Hamilton deserved equaliser - Rice

Hamilton head coach Brian Rice: "I think our second-half performance meant we deserved at least a point. We went for it, it was gung-ho at times, but it was a brilliant effort from the boys.

St Mirren manager Jim Goodwin: "Second half, Hamilton pinned us back and we couldn't get out. We looked very nervy at moments, but we still had a couple of opportunities to put the game to bed."

Players 'devastated' at missing top six - Goodwin

What's next?

These sides are due to meet again - same place, kick-off time to be confirmed - the Scottish Cup on Saturday 3 April following the international break.

Line-ups

Hamilton

Formation 3-4-1-2

  • 23Fulton
  • 4StirlingSubstituted forMoyoat 45'minutes
  • 16MartinSubstituted forHughesat 64'minutes
  • 5Easton
  • 27Hodson
  • 2Odoffin
  • 8Martin
  • 3McMann
  • 34Callachan
  • 32SmithSubstituted forMunroat 80'minutes
  • 7Anderson

Substitutes

  • 14Trafford
  • 15Hughes
  • 17Stanger
  • 18Mimnaugh
  • 20Moyo
  • 21Munro
  • 22Gourlay
  • 26Redfern
  • 41Scully

St Mirren

Formation 3-5-2

  • 1Alnwick
  • 22Fraser
  • 5McCarthyBooked at 34mins
  • 4Shaughnessy
  • 2Tait
  • 7Doyle-Hayes
  • 17McGrath
  • 10McAllisterSubstituted forErhahonat 56'minutes
  • 11Durmus
  • 23ErwinSubstituted forConnollyat 56'minutes
  • 9ObikaSubstituted forFlynnat 88'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Mason
  • 8Flynn
  • 14MacPherson
  • 15Finlayson
  • 19Reid
  • 21Connolly
  • 25Erhahon
  • 26Lyness
  • 30Henderson
Referee:
Don Robertson

Match Stats

Home TeamHamiltonAway TeamSt Mirren
Possession
Home54%
Away46%
Shots
Home8
Away17
Shots on Target
Home2
Away4
Corners
Home5
Away8
Fouls
Home15
Away11

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Hamilton Academical 1, St. Mirren 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Hamilton Academical 1, St. Mirren 1.

  3. Post update

    Offside, Hamilton Academical. Ryan Fulton tries a through ball, but David Moyo is caught offside.

  4. Post update

    Hand ball by Joe Shaughnessy (St. Mirren).

  5. Post update

    Foul by Lee Hodson (Hamilton Academical).

  6. Post update

    Ethan Erhahon (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Post update

    Offside, St. Mirren. Jamie McGrath tries a through ball, but Richard Tait is caught offside.

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Jamie McGrath (St. Mirren) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Ilkay Durmus with a cross.

  9. Goal!

    Goal! Hamilton Academical 1, St. Mirren 1. Kyle Munro (Hamilton Academical) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Scott McMann with a cross following a set piece situation.

  10. Post update

    David Moyo (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Joe Shaughnessy (St. Mirren).

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Mirren. Ryan Flynn replaces Jonathan Obika.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Kyle Munro (Hamilton Academical).

  14. Post update

    Marcus Fraser (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Scott Martin (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  16. Post update

    Dangerous play by Jonathan Obika (St. Mirren).

  17. Post update

    Corner, Hamilton Academical. Conceded by Joe Shaughnessy.

  18. Post update

    Offside, St. Mirren. Joe Shaughnessy tries a through ball, but Jamie McGrath is caught offside.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, Hamilton Academical. Kyle Munro replaces Callum Smith.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Ilkay Durmus (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high from a direct free kick.

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