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Match Report St Johnstone 1-1 Ross County

Ross County managed to get another Premiership point on the board before the Winter Break. A draw at McDiarmid Park with St Johnstone means the Staggies end 2019 on 21 points from 20 matches.


A toothless start to the match changed on 20 minutes. Billy McKay and Ross Stewart linked up well and saw Ross Stewart manage to get a shot away from 20 yards. The shot heading toward the left hand side of goal was easily caught by Zander Clark in the home goal. Stewart would then be forced off just before the half hour. The Staggies striker falling to a hamstring problem and being replaced by Brian Graham.


Just moments after coming on, Graham had a chance to put the Staggies in front. Mullin sent in a great ball from the right hand side which the Saints defender missed at the near post. Graham, not expecting the ball to reach him then attempted to execute a shot but couldn’t make clean contact.


The home side would then have a great chance to take the lead before the interval. A searching Matty Kennedy cross was cleared only as far as Ralston on the far edge of the box and his drive went narrowly wide of the near post.


Ali McCann would have the best chance of the opening exchanges of the second half. The Saints midfielder made a driving run from the centre of the park beating 3 players but he flashes his shot near Baxter’s near post.


Matty Kennedy would be the next to spurn a chance for the home side. Drey Wright’s left hand side freekick aimed for the back post and was headed back in to Kennedy who from 4 yards out managed to head over the cross bar. Kennedy would have yet another effort just moments later when he won the ball in the middle of the park but his saw his effort from 30 yards come back off the crossbar.


Against the run of play the Staggies would take the lead with 73 minutes on the clock. The ball made its way to Billy McKay on the edge of the box and Iain Vigurs nipped the ball from McKay’s toes, took a touch to the right before hammering past Clark at his near post.


The Staggies could have doubled their lead just moments later. Billy McKay surrounded by two Saints players managed to create a yard for himself to send a low cross in to the box. Josh Mullin met the ball at the near post but his shot spun wide.


With 5 minutes left the home side equalised. St Johnstone substitute Callum Hendry met a cross at the near post and headed with pinpoint accuracy in to the near top hand corner to square the match.


The drama would not finish there. As we went in to stoppage time, and with Baxter about to kick the ball from his hands, referee Bobby Madden blew his whistle and gave the home side an indirect freekick inside the Staggies box for Baxter holding on to the ball for too long. The effort deflected off a 7 man Ross County wall and out for a corner which failed to produce for Tommy Wright’s side.  Ross County would be reduced to 10 men with seconds remaining when Brian Graham was shown a second yellow card for a tackle on Kerr.


This now sees the Staggies go in to the Winter Break in 8th place in the division.

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