22/12/2013 Sportscene


22/12/2013

Jonathan Sutherland introduces highlights of the weekend's matches in the new SPFL Scottish Premiership, with comment on and analysis of the week's main talking points.


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It was a goal fest the last time County and United met. United won

:00:23.:00:30.

4-2. Terry Butcher will be looking for festive cheer as his side host

:00:31.:00:36.

Saints. Harts will be hoping to avenge their Scottish Cup drubbing

:00:37.:00:41.

as they travel to Parkhead. The Buddies will be at Fir Park with

:00:42.:00:45.

both sides desperate for all three points. The play-off place gets

:00:46.:00:51.

interesting. And the battle for second spot heats up as Aberdeen

:00:52.:00:55.

travel to Inverness in the Game of the Day. It's promising to be a

:00:56.:00:59.

Christmas cracker of a football schedule.

:01:00.:01:06.

Good evening and welcome to Sportscene as we start the first

:01:07.:01:11.

course of some serious festive football indulgence. A

:01:12.:01:14.

mouth-watering feast over the next couple of wees and questions abound

:01:15.:01:17.

in this make or break part of the season. Who will emerge triumphant

:01:18.:01:21.

in the race for second place? A Hearts doomed for relegation? Who

:01:22.:01:27.

will get sucked in through the trap door. In our troop door is Billy

:01:28.:01:32.

Dodds and the Northern Ireland manager, Michael O'Neill.

:01:33.:01:36.

Almost half of all premiership goals will be scored in just the one

:01:37.:01:43.

match. We start in the Highlands. Aberdeen were taking on Inverness.

:01:44.:01:48.

Watching for us there was Rob McClean.

:01:49.:01:56.

For his first home game as Inverness manager, Hughes making one change.

:01:57.:02:09.

Williams in from the start. Hector into central defence for

:02:10.:02:17.

Aberdeen. Inverness seven games unbeaten.

:02:18.:02:23.

Looking to get second spot in the premiership table.

:02:24.:02:36.

Great touch from McKay. Very close. Denied the opportunity by Anderson.

:02:37.:02:38.

Clips the edge of the post. Handball. It's a penalty for

:02:39.:03:00.

Aberdeen. Vernon ducked under the ball. Scored from a corner kick last

:03:01.:03:08.

weekend. And Robson scores from a penalty

:03:09.:03:13.

kick this weekend. And Aberdeen are ahead. Blahhinged home by Robson.

:03:14.:03:34.

McGin on the move. Vernon. Back again with Pawlett.

:03:35.:03:44.

Robson. The double for Aberdeen. Two goals in, ten minutes from the

:03:45.:03:51.

veteran midfielder. It's a really well judged header, drifting inside

:03:52.:03:54.

the post, past the despairing hands. Vernon. Make that 3-0! Pawlett. This

:03:55.:04:17.

is a stunning first half from about deern. Vernon's been outstanding for

:04:18.:04:26.

them up upfront -- Aberdeen. Aberdeen have a three goal

:04:27.:04:33.

advantage. Inverness look shock and stunned, as

:04:34.:04:39.

well they might be. And now, McGin threatens and scores. -- Mcginn.

:04:40.:04:47.

Four goals for Aberdeen in 22 first half monies.

:04:48.:04:53.

And even already, it looks like game over. McGinn's ninth of the season.

:04:54.:05:03.

Christmas coming early for the Dons fans.

:05:04.:05:07.

Looking for a quick response. It will have to be something dramatic

:05:08.:05:15.

to turn this around. Tremarco. . McKay scores.

:05:16.:05:27.

Just what they wanted. Making the scoreline look a little bit better.

:05:28.:05:36.

Scramble in the six yard box. McKay with the finishing touch. His 16th

:05:37.:05:45.

of the season. Anderson. Long ball from Tremarco.

:05:46.:05:52.

Dorran. McKay. Ross. McKay is in again. Langfield.

:05:53.:05:58.

It's two in ten minutes for the Inverness top goal scorer! 17 goals

:05:59.:06:06.

in 19 games for him. It's a remarkable return and it's brought

:06:07.:06:11.

this game back to life for Caley Thistle. Dancing around Langfield

:06:12.:06:17.

and he's still got a bit to do. Manages to squeeze that past Hector.

:06:18.:06:25.

From nil four at half time, now two nurse. Tremarco. 's corner. It could

:06:26.:06:37.

so easily have been 4-3. What an amazing game in the Highland

:06:38.:07:04.

capital. Warren. Graham Shinnie in the 90th minute 3. An incredible

:07:05.:07:11.

Caley Thistle comeback from 4-0 to 4-3. The first half shows what we

:07:12.:07:16.

are capable of, second half showed me there is still a lot to be done

:07:17.:07:19.

here, but overall the players worked haar for the points -- hard for the

:07:20.:07:29.

three points. We stay undefeated. To beat Inverness twice home and away

:07:30.:07:33.

is good going. I just didn't anticipate the manner in which we

:07:34.:07:37.

did it. You cannot win a match if you concede four in the second half.

:07:38.:07:42.

Second half we showed what Inverness were all about, we were about spirit

:07:43.:07:47.

and were on the front foot and almost pulled it off.ade cell to the

:07:48.:07:52.

players, pride still in the dressing room and hopefully in defeat, I'm

:07:53.:07:57.

still very proud of them. First of all, we should say an astonishing

:07:58.:08:01.

game, Billy and a great advert for the Scottish premiership? Brilliant.

:08:02.:08:05.

Wish I was doing it yesterday for the radio, but John had that lucky

:08:06.:08:10.

job. I must admit, it was just two teams in the form of their life.

:08:11.:08:14.

Inverness, you you know what you get from them, confidence, team spirit,

:08:15.:08:19.

Aberdeen, good blend of youth and experience and it was no surprise

:08:20.:08:23.

that Inverness ended up coming back yesterday. Aberdeen got four goals

:08:24.:08:29.

up and you still couldn't write Inverness off. It had everything in

:08:30.:08:41.

it. Michael, welcome to Sportsscene. McGinn and McKay, their record is

:08:42.:08:49.

fantastic. McKay 37 league goals, McGinn 29 and one cup goal, a total

:08:50.:08:57.

of 74 with McKay's seven cup goals. Must be great to have them here?

:08:58.:09:01.

Great stats there. I wasn't aware it was as high as that, but two players

:09:02.:09:06.

who've been consistently good. Made a huge impact last season and again

:09:07.:09:10.

Billy particularly doing it this season with 17 goals and Niall

:09:11.:09:15.

scoring a variety of goals, plays in many positions, centrely or wide. We

:09:16.:09:19.

saw him yesterday scoring from the wide area, so long may that

:09:20.:09:22.

continue. Two goals from McKay yesterday but first, McGinn, how

:09:23.:09:26.

impressed were you by him? Playing off the left yesterday which I think

:09:27.:09:30.

is his favourite position. Good movement from Vernon to take the

:09:31.:09:34.

centre back away. He's got himself against the centre back and there's

:09:35.:09:40.

only going to be one winner as space opens up for him. We see him there.

:09:41.:09:47.

That's instinct isn't it, to drift into that space? Yes. Let them go.

:09:48.:09:53.

Exactly. Find a wee bit of space and he's sharp enough to poke it in.

:09:54.:09:58.

Nice goal this because he is centre again and picks the ball up, nice

:09:59.:10:03.

bunkup play off his chest, but straightaway, he knows where the

:10:04.:10:09.

space is. Hector steps up and Billy knows where he wants it. We see the

:10:10.:10:15.

quality and composure. Good finish. 17 goals for McKay this season which

:10:16.:10:19.

is remarkable in itself in 19 games for Inverness. He's played four

:10:20.:10:23.

times for Northern Ireland, still to hit the back of the net for Northern

:10:24.:10:26.

Ireland, but how good do you think he can be? I think he's a player

:10:27.:10:31.

that continues to improve. I think week-by-week. The statistics, as we

:10:32.:10:38.

showed earlier, are exceptional. He probably deserved more of a chance

:10:39.:10:41.

than he's had, if I'm honest and certainly I intend to give him that

:10:42.:10:46.

chance at the start of the Euros. Can he bring that form for Inverness

:10:47.:10:49.

on to the international scene? It's different in the sense that he may

:10:50.:10:53.

not get as many chances as he would for us. He's at the top of his game.

:10:54.:10:58.

He's come back here, come up to Scotland, had a couple of

:10:59.:11:02.

disappointments at earlier clubs and has rebuilt his career up here.

:11:03.:11:07.

Doing a great job for Caley Thistle. Dundee scored at least four goals

:11:08.:11:12.

per match lately. You can understand that Ross County travel toed to

:11:13.:11:16.

Tannadice with trepidation. John Barnes is the commentators.

:11:17.:11:24.

One change as the rightback spots are at earn negotiated -- at earn

:11:25.:11:31.

negotiated. Injury means one change as well for

:11:32.:11:36.

County. Trying to set up Armstrong.

:11:37.:11:56.

A fine intervention from McClean. Had to time that tackle to

:11:57.:12:01.

perfection. It was Quinn who was caught in possession in the middle

:12:02.:12:06.

of the park. And United almost punishing them.

:12:07.:12:15.

Lovely Pass through for Robertson and it was in the net, but the flag

:12:16.:12:21.

is up. Offside.

:12:22.:12:25.

Not quite sure whether it was against Robertson or Graham. It will

:12:26.:12:28.

be the full back. Kerry with the free kick. Awkward

:12:29.:12:42.

one. Off the bar! Scary moments there for the Dundee

:12:43.:12:47.

United defence, in particular the goalkeeper. That lethal left foot

:12:48.:12:52.

deceiving everyone. Graham looking to add to his tally

:12:53.:13:13.

for the season. He's got three so far. But straight at the keeper.

:13:14.:13:30.

He really needed to hit the target there, but good, creative build-up

:13:31.:13:34.

from Ross County. That is a great crossfield pass.

:13:35.:13:45.

Wilson does well to get there. It is Graham! And Fraser wins the contest

:13:46.:13:54.

with the big striker again. Excellent delivery in by Wilson. And

:13:55.:13:58.

a good stop by the keeper. Not a bad effort from John Rankin.

:13:59.:14:19.

He has had a few in recent weeks. Just to hide this time. -- just too

:14:20.:14:31.

high. A double substitution. Gold and Graham come off.

:14:32.:14:40.

What an introduction that would have been, within 30 seconds of coming

:14:41.:14:49.

on. Jackie McNamara changes his strikeforce and almost produces a

:14:50.:14:50.

goal. Good -- David good Willie should

:14:51.:15:04.

have kept that one down. Here is Goodwillie. Armstrong. And

:15:05.:15:42.

Dundee United are in front. Gary Mackay-Steven eventually finds a

:15:43.:15:47.

hole in the Ross County rearguard. Set up by Armstrong. Gary

:15:48.:15:52.

Mackay-Steven with his seventh goal of the season, his fifth in the last

:15:53.:15:58.

five matches. And it could secure six wins in a row for United. I

:15:59.:16:03.

think the players are disappointed to come away with nothing today,

:16:04.:16:08.

because they kept Dundee United very quiet, from the point of view that

:16:09.:16:12.

they hadn't scored eight goals up until we make a mistake. We kept

:16:13.:16:19.

plugging away, we were very patient and we got our just rewards in the

:16:20.:16:24.

end. They were trying time wasting at times, but we kept going in the

:16:25.:16:28.

second half, and then towards our own fans and we got what we

:16:29.:16:32.

deserved. Younger viewers may not remember that you were a Dundee

:16:33.:16:36.

United player in the late 80s and early 90s. How impressed have you

:16:37.:16:42.

been by your former side? They have been fantastic, they are the good

:16:43.:16:46.

news story in the SPL this season. Not only with the young players that

:16:47.:16:49.

were already there, but the players he has signed, they just have a real

:16:50.:16:57.

flair about their game, a real openness about how they play.

:16:58.:17:01.

Yesterday, they had 21 corners, which shows you how badly they tried

:17:02.:17:05.

to win the game. They are on a great run, but he will be as happy with a

:17:06.:17:10.

1-0 victory as he will be with the goals they have scored in recent

:17:11.:17:15.

weeks. Eight hard-working performance by Ross County but did

:17:16.:17:20.

they let themselves down with the goal? Well, they thought they could

:17:21.:17:26.

go on and win it. It is a forward move from Ross County, and because

:17:27.:17:33.

the defenders are so high up, the United players have the quality to

:17:34.:17:38.

expose you. That is the area where he might have been, and it is a

:17:39.:17:41.

lovely pull-back and a great finish by Gary Mackay-Steven. They are

:17:42.:17:47.

probably the one team, along with Celtic, that counterattack better

:17:48.:17:54.

than anyone else. TUC Dundee United as the favourites to finish second?

:17:55.:18:04.

-- TUC. I think they are in with a chance. Aberdeen have more

:18:05.:18:07.

experience in key areas. They will have to have a dip at some point so

:18:08.:18:11.

the real challenge will be to manage them through that but at the moment,

:18:12.:18:15.

confidence is sky high and I sure they will be looking forward to the

:18:16.:18:20.

festive period, the fixtures come thick and fast. How nervous should

:18:21.:18:24.

Ross County be about display of trapdoor at the bottom the table? --

:18:25.:18:32.

about this play-off trapdoor. Well, they are there, but they proved it

:18:33.:18:36.

last year, they went on a run and got themselves up the league but you

:18:37.:18:39.

can see they are losing confidence. They nearly got some yesterday with

:18:40.:18:43.

a great result but it turned out not to be the case. They have the

:18:44.:18:48.

experience to get away with it, they have had a big turnover with players

:18:49.:18:52.

but they need a result. Plenty more to come tonight, plus there are

:18:53.:18:56.

extended highlights all the games at the BBC sport website. A busy week

:18:57.:19:03.

for Santa and for us. On Boxing Day, join us for all of the

:19:04.:19:06.

Sportscene results at 4pm and we will bring you all the premiership

:19:07.:19:11.

highlights from Boxing on Friday, and 11pm start on BBC One. Next, we

:19:12.:19:17.

are off to Celtic Park, where hearts were hoping to avoid a repeat of

:19:18.:19:19.

their recent league cup hammering. Pukki with another chance to

:19:20.:19:41.

impress. Hearts will be looking for some redemption after the Scottish

:19:42.:19:46.

cup humbling against the same opposition. It could be a long shift

:19:47.:19:48.

for Colin Paterson upfront. He has squeezed it through for Kris

:19:49.:19:59.

Commons. The man who scored a hat-trick against Hearts in the cup

:20:00.:20:03.

tie is denied by Jamie MacDonald. He is probably anticipating a busy

:20:04.:20:13.

afternoon, is the Hearts no-one. -- number one.

:20:14.:20:23.

The goalkeeper has got a touch to that. It is a good job he did.

:20:24.:20:28.

Celtic still come. Anthony Stokes with this chance, the

:20:29.:20:42.

first glaring opportunity of the game, coming on eight minutes. It is

:20:43.:20:55.

a great save by MacDonald. Gary Lock, not much to work with as the

:20:56.:21:00.

Hearts manager. The last time they won here in the league, it was

:21:01.:21:01.

almost a team of stars. Good save again. He has actually had

:21:02.:21:07.

a pretty decent season. A good ball and MacDonald again to

:21:08.:21:37.

deny Joe Ledley. Either side of the goalkeeper, that is a goal. Take

:21:38.:21:40.

nothing away from the slave, he had to make it.

:21:41.:21:44.

Celtic unbeaten so far this season. They looked like they will maintain

:21:45.:21:57.

it, that is the target Neil Lennon and his staff have said. And what a

:21:58.:22:01.

turn by Kris Commons, and guess who is there again. Jamie MacDonald

:22:02.:22:07.

comes out on top in this duel between him and Commons.

:22:08.:22:19.

Well, that should have been a Hearts throw, Dylan McGavin making that

:22:20.:22:28.

point. -- dilemma gallon. It came off Pukki last.

:22:29.:22:40.

It is a great ball for Kris Commons. The slayer of Hearts does it again.

:22:41.:22:53.

Good finish at the angle, what a ball from Brown. Commons across

:22:54.:22:57.

MacDonald, who could do nothing this time. And Celtic's top scorer comes

:22:58.:23:01.

to the fore again. It has been over a year since Celtic

:23:02.:23:14.

last lost a league game here. James Forrest, dazzling on the wing. In

:23:15.:23:19.

towards Ledley and it is Jamie MacDonald at his near post. Hearts

:23:20.:23:25.

have defended resolutely this afternoon, it hasn't been a walk in

:23:26.:23:29.

the park for Neil Lennon and his team.

:23:30.:23:32.

Headed off the line by Commons from McGowan. That would have been quite

:23:33.:23:41.

sensational, Hearts's first real attempt on goal.

:23:42.:23:46.

Georgia Samurai is, on as a sub, one of the contract rebels. He squeezes

:23:47.:23:53.

it through to James Forrest who finishes it off. -- Giorgio

:23:54.:24:07.

great finish by James Forrest with the outside of the boot. That makes

:24:08.:24:12.

things more comfortable for Celtic, who took a long time to break

:24:13.:24:18.

through the Hearts resistance today. James Forrest, on as a half-time

:24:19.:24:29.

sub, and it is 2-0 to the champions. After the result couple of weeks

:24:30.:24:33.

ago, we were all hurt badly, and we knew that coming here today, we

:24:34.:24:36.

would have to change the way we normally play. I like to see a

:24:37.:24:43.

Hearts team on the front foot, but we had to learn our lesson from the

:24:44.:24:47.

last time and I felt the boys acquitted themselves brilliantly

:24:48.:24:50.

today. They obviously made it hard for us, we couldn't really make

:24:51.:24:54.

accurately to break them down as much as we would like, but three

:24:55.:25:03.

points into Christmas is nice. So, Celtic, unbeaten so far, grinding

:25:04.:25:07.

out a victory. A bit of a flat game, Hearts cautious after the

:25:08.:25:12.

seven -0 hammering, but it took sitting into a whole new level

:25:13.:25:20.

yesterday. -- 7-0. But I can understand it, after that one of cup

:25:21.:25:29.

game, you can see: Paterson, that was his starting place. They needed

:25:30.:25:33.

a lot over 90 minutes not to get picked up and Celtic eventually got

:25:34.:25:36.

the breakthrough, but that is the way Hearts set their stall out. A

:25:37.:25:41.

huge amount of bodies behind the ball, no outfall at times, but they

:25:42.:25:46.

frustrated Celtic for long periods. They get to half-time at nil half

:25:47.:25:57.

full -- 0-0 and they think job done. Did they have no choice but to play

:25:58.:26:02.

that way? They could have had a focal point and one up, but Celtic

:26:03.:26:06.

pin you back. They nearly nicked an equaliser in the last minute, so

:26:07.:26:15.

Gary Locke was trying to say, they didn't want to lose any more

:26:16.:26:18.

confidence than they already had but it didn't look good for a Hearts

:26:19.:26:22.

fan. A touch of forging the Celtic when it came to the Commons goal. --

:26:23.:26:31.

fortune. Yes, it is played of Pukki, but the linesman on that side is in

:26:32.:26:36.

the opposition half, so it is a long way to see it. But they are still

:26:37.:26:42.

set up, there are a lot of bodies behind the ball. What they don't do

:26:43.:26:48.

is get out to the ball. We see here, Walker sees Fisher on the right-hand

:26:49.:26:54.

side, that is fine, but he takes that little step and it is their own

:26:55.:26:58.

doing. Just that little Campbell to go and face up the ball and that was

:26:59.:27:03.

the downfall for Hearts. They nearly got through it, just that bit of

:27:04.:27:09.

inexperience. The distance is too great and it actually makes Scott

:27:10.:27:13.

Brown's mind up for the past and it is a good finish. Are Hearts down?

:27:14.:27:20.

It would take a minor miracle, with the boys they have got and the

:27:21.:27:24.

amount of points they had to catch, it is too much to ask. For almost

:27:25.:27:29.

two months, Kilmarnock fans have been deprived of the site of a home

:27:30.:27:33.

win. A leaky defence hasn't helped. They started the day the bottom, but

:27:34.:27:40.

with Kris Boyd and Chris Johnston upfront, always the chance of goals.

:27:41.:27:48.

They took a Partick Thistle side where, apart from Kris Doolan, no

:27:49.:27:53.

player had scored and -- in open place in September. Could their

:27:54.:27:55.

fortunes improve on the road at Rugby Park? No doubting Partick

:27:56.:28:04.

Thistle brought a freshness to the premiership this season. Not taking

:28:05.:28:07.

chances is an issue. Lawler's shot failing to hit the target.

:28:08.:28:15.

At the other end, calls for hand pal shrugged off.

:28:16.:28:22.

-- handball. As the match crept towards half time, it looked like

:28:23.:28:27.

0-0 until Chris Johnston took his chance to put Kilmarnock 1-0 in

:28:28.:28:31.

front. The break of the ball falling kindly and the 19-year-old with his

:28:32.:28:37.

third goal in four games. For Kris Doolan, it was six goals so

:28:38.:28:41.

far this season going into this match. Number 7-4 minutes after the

:28:42.:28:45.

restart. Partick Thistle's Christmas would be

:28:46.:28:50.

looking less festive without him. In recent times, he's carried the

:28:51.:28:53.

goal-scoring responsibility single handedly.

:28:54.:28:59.

A real feature of Partick's play has been the threat they posed down the

:29:00.:29:05.

flanks. Great wing play from Higginbotham and the ball found

:29:06.:29:09.

Lawler but he missed the target again.

:29:10.:29:16.

Kilmarnock new a victory would see them leapfrog the visitors at the

:29:17.:29:20.

bottom end of the table. This effort too hot for Fox to handle.

:29:21.:29:25.

In the 73rd minute, the knock down from the free kick landed at the

:29:26.:29:33.

feet of Jackson Irvine. His last effort touched in by Kris Boyd and

:29:34.:29:40.

Kilmarnock had the lead. The instinct, no doubt about it, the

:29:41.:29:44.

former Rangers striker claiming his ninth of the campaign.

:29:45.:29:56.

A superb piece of passing play from Partick Thistle. A great stop and

:29:57.:30:02.

the manager Alan Johnson knew just how valuable three points would be.

:30:03.:30:06.

He had his keeper to thank before the end.

:30:07.:30:14.

Sampson flew to the rescue. You look at the league table, three

:30:15.:30:18.

points off Hibs, a lot of games we came in over the festive period and

:30:19.:30:23.

we can go higher up the table. I staid to the lads, we are still in a

:30:24.:30:28.

good position but we have to start taking chances. I thought we

:30:29.:30:34.

dominated the game, and to be fair, Sampson was man-of-the-match again.

:30:35.:30:39.

Plenty of chances, Billy. You were at the match yesterday. Should

:30:40.:30:42.

Partick Thistle have taken something from it? Yes. I really enjoyed the

:30:43.:30:47.

game. We have said that to many times about them this season, all

:30:48.:30:52.

the football, create chances, dealen's scoring goals now so you

:30:53.:30:57.

would take him out the equation -- Doolan. They are just not winning

:30:58.:31:01.

games. Can't seem to hit the target too regularly. What was the defining

:31:02.:31:09.

moment for you? No doubt one each. Higginbotham down the left hand

:31:10.:31:16.

side. Mis-hit there and you see the other angle, it Faws to Lawlers. --

:31:17.:31:22.

falls to. They fraught a freshness to the

:31:23.:31:26.

premiership this season. It's getting to the point where they need

:31:27.:31:29.

somebody else to take on goal-scoring responsibility, not

:31:30.:31:32.

just Doolan? I think so. There's been a lot of, I suppose,

:31:33.:31:36.

responsibility on him and he has scored goals this season. I saw him

:31:37.:31:40.

in the First Division and was impressed last season and they have

:31:41.:31:43.

done well to do as well as they have done at this point. I think

:31:44.:31:48.

Archibald will be maybe looking at the January opportunity to maybe

:31:49.:31:51.

bring one or two in just to help the team that he has now in the second

:31:52.:31:54.

half of the season. How big a win was that for Kilmarnock, Billy?

:31:55.:32:00.

Huge. I mean, Kris Boyd has been doing it, I think that's three goals

:32:01.:32:05.

in the last three games, a good return. He led the line well, it

:32:06.:32:09.

wasn't just about scoring goals, but they didn't play will, but Alan

:32:10.:32:16.

Johnston will say they played better. It evened itself out. Huge

:32:17.:32:22.

three points with that Kris Boyd goal. . Inverness and Aberdeen

:32:23.:32:30.

dualing it out for second place. Motherwell are below the radar this

:32:31.:32:35.

season. St Mourn never lost to Motherwell at

:32:36.:32:42.

Fir Park during the Stuart McCall era, could they keep that going? --

:32:43.:32:47.

St Mirren. Motherwell look to record

:32:48.:32:50.

back-to-back victories for the first time since September. Harkins

:32:51.:33:01.

starts. Corner. Header. Good save pushed

:33:02.:33:13.

away. Ramsden was up.

:33:14.:33:16.

Back in again. Good corner. Well attacked by

:33:17.:33:26.

Ramsden. Got it on target. Good one-handed stop.

:33:27.:33:33.

Hamill. In again. Well worked. Advanced

:33:34.:33:46.

position. Little chip across. Good goalkeeping. Raced off his line.

:33:47.:34:02.

Good passing play again. Ainsworth. McGregor. Once, twice. Scores!

:34:03.:34:21.

What a classy opening. Four goals in his first ten appearances for

:34:22.:34:25.

Motherwell. Just one since and he's found the score sheet today.

:34:26.:34:34.

Simply lashed the ball. Classy goal from Motherwell.

:34:35.:34:42.

Ahead after 51 minutes. Scruffy from Saints. Hasly with the

:34:43.:34:51.

intercept. Opt attack again. Sutton gets on. 2-0! One touch. Motherwell

:34:52.:35:05.

and Ainsworth who scored on his debut, scores for Motherwell as a

:35:06.:35:12.

Motherwell player. Nestled it in at the post. Nothing the keeper could

:35:13.:35:22.

do. McGinn.

:35:23.:35:33.

Something out offal nothing there for St Mirren. McGinn with the

:35:34.:35:35.

follow-up shot. Lennon there. Oh, a chance. 3-0!

:35:36.:36:04.

What a great finish. Again, one touch from Motherwell. How about

:36:05.:36:08.

that for a finish? ! It's his first double for

:36:09.:36:11.

Motherwell. Motherwell are 3-0 ahead.

:36:12.:36:17.

Style and swagger. Ramsden. Lawson. Under control. Drives it.

:36:18.:36:32.

That was done in style today. I thought last week's game was

:36:33.:36:48.

scrappy. Today, really good performance, clean sheet, three

:36:49.:36:53.

really good goals and a bit more like us. Motherwell made better

:36:54.:37:01.

decisions all over. Anier today was absolutely terrific. That caused us

:37:02.:37:04.

a great deal of problems. In the past, it's something we've handled

:37:05.:37:10.

well. It's pleasing that we have another game come Wednesday to try

:37:11.:37:13.

and put that right and we must get back to doing what we do best. I was

:37:14.:37:18.

there yesterday, Anier very much the star of the show, Michael, and a

:37:19.:37:22.

player that you have some previous knowledge of? Yes, when I was

:37:23.:37:26.

manager at Shamrock Rovers, we played a European Champions League

:37:27.:37:32.

qualifying game and he played there. He was their best player. He is a

:37:33.:37:37.

threat and not only off crosses, but he's strong, he has good technique.

:37:38.:37:41.

A great finish off as well on his right hand side and I think he

:37:42.:37:45.

challenges all the time. He can go in behind, he leads a line well as

:37:46.:37:51.

well. He's direct. Not played every game this season. Left him out a

:37:52.:37:55.

couple of times, but a good replacement. That's all technically

:37:56.:37:59.

wrong, but so right. An unbelievable finish. You see him score the first

:38:00.:38:03.

one which is right foot and the second was I which is left. Anier

:38:04.:38:08.

was in the stands yesterday watching him score the goals.

:38:09.:38:13.

They want Anier back in mid-January, his old team, but Motherwell will

:38:14.:38:17.

presumably do all they can to tray and keep him? They will. He's scored

:38:18.:38:21.

a lot of goals for them. They'll probably find somebody, if he ends

:38:22.:38:25.

up having to go back, but they have been a big find for him. His return

:38:26.:38:31.

was a lot of goals which is a good thing for the club. They struggled

:38:32.:38:36.

for a bit. Stuart's done well to pick him up. The result for St

:38:37.:38:42.

Mirren? Bit flat yesterday, then Dundee coming own Boxing Day? Danny

:38:43.:38:46.

had a bit of pressure early on in the season and, to be fair, he's dug

:38:47.:38:51.

in and turned them around. Motherwell is a difficult place to

:38:52.:38:54.

go, so he won't be too concerned. He'll look forward to the next game

:38:55.:38:59.

and it will be a difficult one. I like watching St Mirren play, they

:39:00.:39:03.

play good football and should be a good game on Boxing Day.

:39:04.:39:07.

Motherwell's great contenders for second place? Yes, but I think it

:39:08.:39:11.

will be difficult for them this year with the turnover of players. They

:39:12.:39:17.

might lose Anier and for me, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness are that bit

:39:18.:39:19.

stronger. We shall see. Despite the arrival of

:39:20.:39:24.

Terry Butcher, Hibs remain very much at bottom six. That wouldn't change,

:39:25.:39:28.

no matter what the result at St Johnston yesterday. Hibs need

:39:29.:39:32.

someone to score goals regularly for them. They only managed ten in the

:39:33.:39:38.

league all season. St Johnston only scored six league goals on their

:39:39.:39:43.

travels and have drawn a blank in the last two, both of which ended in

:39:44.:39:48.

defeat. Chances of a 12-goal thriller, looked slim yesterday at

:39:49.:39:56.

Easter Road. 2013 has been frustrated for Hibs with just two

:39:57.:40:00.

league wins in the last 12 months and again, they struggled to find

:40:01.:40:08.

the net. Davidson was struggling after an

:40:09.:40:16.

early knock and was replaced by former Hib mate.

:40:17.:40:25.

This was a late lunge on Cairney. A straight red shown by Alan Muir.

:40:26.:40:29.

Little option for the man in the middle. Many Hibs fans were

:40:30.:40:34.

surprised wealther spoon was allowed to leave in the summer to join his

:40:35.:40:38.

hometown club. Almost set up an opening for May. Strong defending by

:40:39.:40:43.

the Hibs rear guard keeping the 21-year-old at bay. A good cross

:40:44.:40:48.

from Wetherspoon but an except lent block by Scott Robinson.

:40:49.:40:58.

-- except lent. -- excellent. This cross was kept out.

:40:59.:41:02.

Robertson with the cross. Teenager Jason Cummings almost had a

:41:03.:41:13.

dream start coming within inches of this cross from Liam Craig. Hibs

:41:14.:41:18.

boss Terry Butcher watched from the stands as he served a one-match

:41:19.:41:24.

touchline ban and Collins almost gave him an early cross mass

:41:25.:41:31.

present. Foster with a cross, Manus at full

:41:32.:41:42.

stretch. One final piece of drama. . Challenge from Easton. A tangle of

:41:43.:41:47.

legs but the referee says no penalty, so no goals at Easter Road.

:41:48.:41:54.

We 'll look back on it as a great point. I thought for the last hour,

:41:55.:42:01.

we were magnificent. Hibs had very few chances and I think in the first

:42:02.:42:05.

half, we had the best chance. Couldn't get enough on the ball,

:42:06.:42:09.

May, to stick it in. St Johnston went a man down, were very resolute.

:42:10.:42:15.

With May upfront they are a threat even on his own. The defenders

:42:16.:42:20.

worked well today. Full credit to Tommy Wright and the team. They

:42:21.:42:24.

withstood a lot of pressure from us and we couldn't get the killer ball.

:42:25.:42:30.

Some sad news tonight about the death of Hibs youth player David

:42:31.:42:36.

Paul. Also a young Hearts junior player Jimmy Skinner who died during

:42:37.:42:42.

a match in Edinburgh. Our thoughts are with the families this evening.

:42:43.:42:49.

What was your view of the sending off yesterday? I thought at the time

:42:50.:42:53.

it was harsh, to be honest, but having seen the tackle, it's

:42:54.:42:57.

wreckless, to say the least. Just calm on? Yes, I feel sorry for

:42:58.:43:04.

Paddy, you see when the ball comes back, his reaction is to get the

:43:05.:43:08.

ball back. You see the tackle from the other angle, it's the trailing

:43:09.:43:14.

leg that's coming in here, Billy? Wreckless and out of control. But it

:43:15.:43:18.

looks worse than what it actually is. I don't know what Tommy Wright

:43:19.:43:24.

will be thinking. Fallon the other week, you think that will never be

:43:25.:43:28.

that, and he takes 20 seconds off it.

:43:29.:43:33.

Should the ref make any allowances given the fact he's just come on and

:43:34.:43:40.

it's a clumsy challenge or is it a follow-through? Me maybe should make

:43:41.:43:44.

an allowance. I think when a player is sent off, around the halfway line

:43:45.:43:47.

as well, there's nothing in the challenge, you know, it's not going

:43:48.:43:51.

to effect a goal-scoring opportunity or anything like that there. I do

:43:52.:43:54.

think that obviously the ref's under a bit of pressure to follow the

:43:55.:43:58.

letter of the law and he is off the ground, so because of that,

:43:59.:44:01.

obviously, the ref's given him the red card. Hibs had a penalty shout

:44:02.:44:11.

turned down. T Johnston had a got keeper who was inspiring yesterday?

:44:12.:44:16.

Yes, he played very well, has done consistently well for St Johnston,

:44:17.:44:20.

made a number of good saves. His defender does well as well. This is

:44:21.:44:24.

a great save, great reaction. Never expects the ball to come off his

:44:25.:44:30.

defender. This is the puck of the punch, good

:44:31.:44:35.

header, good save. I think Alan consistently has been excellent in

:44:36.:44:38.

the SPL since he's come here. One thing he has in his character, every

:44:39.:44:43.

time he's asked to step up a level, he adjusts and does well. In the

:44:44.:44:46.

game he's played for me, he does well. Signs of life for Hibs but not

:44:47.:44:52.

any more? I say it every week, step by step. They still need to pie a

:44:53.:44:58.

couple of more quality play players. I think he's trying to pick your

:44:59.:45:05.

team for you? ! McKay, McGinn... He might do a better job to be fair! To

:45:06.:45:14.

judge Terry is obviously when he's eight to ten months in the job when

:45:15.:45:18.

he has chance to make changes. After all that, the Scottish premiership

:45:19.:45:22.

table looks exactly like this: Celtic ten points clear at the top.

:45:23.:45:42.

Well, Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, Celtic are on top,

:45:43.:45:49.

but enough about that, plenty of questions remain unanswered about

:45:50.:45:52.

how this season will unfold. Join us for the next chapter of the Scottish

:45:53.:45:56.

premiership Christmas story on Friday. Until then, from all of us

:45:57.:46:01.

here at sport scene, do have a very merry Christmas. Good night. --

:46:02.:46:06.

Sportscene.

:46:07.:46:11.

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