Thursday 26th December
Ali McCann scored his first goal for the club this afternoon as Saints secured a second successive away win at Hamilton.
In a match of few chances Saints controlled possession for large spells but were unable to trouble Luke Southwood in the home goal.
The only goal of the game came with 10 minutes remaining as Callum Hendry’s cutback from the byline picked out Ali McCann who converted from 8 yards out.
The win today sees Saints move up to ninth position in the league, 7 points clear of Hearts at the bottom of the league.
Next up for Saints is a home game against Ross County on Sunday, kick off 3pm.
Saints made the trip to South Lanarkshire today to take on Hamilton Accies at the Foys Stadium. Following Saturday’s 0-0 draw with St Mirren at McDiarmid Park, Tommy Wright made four changes for today’s Boxing Day encounter with the Accies. Drey Wright, Jason Holt, Matty Kennedy and Callum Hendry all dropped to the bench to be replaced by David Wotherspoon, Ali McCann, Chris Kane and Stevie May. Accies moved off the bottom of the table on Saturday after beating Hearts 2-1 at the Foys Stadium and Head Coach Brian Rice made two changes to his starting eleven this afternoon. Both Brian Easton and David Moyo came into the team to replace Jamie Hamilton and Steve Davies.
The hosts got the match underway but it was Saints who made a promising start to the game. Tommy Wright’s men were awarded a free kick out wide after 2 minutes following a foul on Stevie May by Aaron McGowan. It was taken by Callum Booth but his delivery into the Accies box was headed clear. Then 3 minutes later a long ball forward was headed on by David Wotherspoon to May and the Saints striker then fed the ball into Chris Kane but he couldn’t get his effort on target.
On 14 minutes a good pass by Mickel Miller played in David Moyo, who broke into the Saints box, but Liam Gordon got back to make a great tackle as he put the ball behind for a corner. It was taken by Scott McCann and his deep delivery was headed back across goal by McGowan before being cleared by Ali McCann.
Saints were playing well as they controlled the game for large spells during the first half but they were unable to test Accies goalkeeper Luke Southwood. On 27 minutes the hosts got a sight of goal as the ball was knocked back to George Oakley but the striker couldn’t get enough power on his effort as his shot trundled wide of Zander Clark’s right-hand post. Then just after the half an hour mark Miller saw his effort from just outside the box go well over.
With 4 minutes of the first half remaining Saints broke well with numbers as May gathered the ball. The Saints striker then played it out to Wotherspoon who advanced down the left before playing the ball into the path of Booth. The left-back then sent in an inviting cross into the Accies box picking out May but his effort was deflected behind for a corner by Brian Easton.
3 minutes into the second half Booth and Wotherspoon linked up well down the left as they setup May on the edge of the area however, his effort went wide of the target.
The first booking of the game came on 59 minutes as Murray Davidson was shown a yellow card for a late lunge on Miller. The resultant free kick from just outside the area was taken by Will Collar but his effort hit the Saints wall before being cleared by the Saints defence.
With 16 minutes remaining Saints introduced Callum Hendry into the action, replacing Stevie May, and the Saints striker was quickly involved into the action as with his first touch of the ball he brought the it down before unleashing a strike. His effort looked like it hit the hand of Sam Stubbs which led to appeals for a penalty by Saints but referee Gavin Duncan ignored the appeals.
Saints though took the lead with 10 minutes remaining as Ali McCann sent the ball out wide to Hendry. The striker then progressed down the right before cutting the ball back to the midfielder who had followed the strikers run as Ali slid in to coolly slot it past Luke Southwood from 8 yards to spark wild celebrations amongst the Saints support in the stand behind the goal.
Saints could have doubled their advantage a couple of minutes later as a Wotherspoon free kick picked out Gordon at the back post as the big defender rose to meet the ball. However, his header went straight across goal before being cleared.
Accies pushed for an equaliser and deep into the 3 minutes of stoppage time they were awarded a free kick in an inviting after Booth fouled Davies. The Englishman stepped up to take the free kick himself but his left footed effort didn’t trouble Zander Clark as it went well wide of the target much to the relief of the travelling Saints support.
Hamilton Accies: Southwood, McGowan, McMann, Collar (Hunt 80), Oakley (Alston 75), Miller, Gogic, Moyo (Davies 66), Easton, Martin, Stubbs
Unused Substitutes: Fon Williams (GK), Cunningham, Winter, Hamilton
Saints: Clark, Davidson, Kane (Tanser 85), Wotherspoon, May (Hendry 74), Kerr, O’Halloran (Wright 67), McCann, Ralston, Gordon, Booth
Unused Substitutes: Parish (GK), Duffy, Holt, Kennedy
Booked: Davidson, Hendry
Scorer: McCann (80)
Referee: Gavin Duncan
Attendance: 1,536 (442 Saints fans)
Match Report by Daryl Scott
Picture: Ali McCann slides in to score the only goal of the game
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