Sat 18 Sep 2021
HT 0-1
Hibernian Hibernian
St Mirren St Mirren
Match Report

A late goal from Joe Shaughnessy saw St Mirren earn a point from Easter Road as we drew 2-2 with the Paisley men this afternoon.

The visitors had earlier broken the deadlock through a terrific Eamonn Brophy counterattack before Jack Ross' men came back in the second half.

Half-time substitute Scott Allan created the equaliser for Paul McGinn to score against his former club before Martin Boyle netted a penalty kick to turn the match on its head and we appeared set for three points.

However, Jim Goodwin’s men produced a dogged performance and will feel they merited their point as Shaughnessy struck very late to restore parity.

The point was enough to put us top of the cinch Premiership and keep our unbeaten run going, however there was certainly a feeling of disappointment at full-time about the two points dropped.

Ross made one change from the side held by Hearts at Tynecastle last weekend as Jake Doyle-Hayes returned to face his former side at the expense of James Scott.

Scott missed out through illness and joined a growing list of players unavailable that includes Daniel MacKay, Christian Doidge, Melker Hallberg, Sean Mackie and Jamie Murphy.

Our new stadium screens helped to create a good atmosphere around Easter Road ahead of kick-off as the sun shone on Leith once again.

We were first to threaten with Kevin Nisbet showing terrific footwork to get between two St Mirren defenders and get a shot away that Conor McCarthy did well to deflect wide for the game’s first corner kick.

Six minutes later Martin Boyle ran onto a lay off from Kyle Magennis and his angled drive flashed wide of the far post.

We were not having it all our own way as St Mirren moved the ball around nicely and looked a potent threat on the counterattack.

Brophy had their earliest opportunity after peeling off the left flank to force Matt Macey into his first save of the afternoon with a low drive.

We were dominating possession and moving the ball around nicely but seldom penetrating a well-drilled St Mirren defence.

Ross switched from 3-5-2 to 4-3-3 to try and get more traction in the game, with Martin Boyle and Chris Cadden switching flanks.

On 27 minutes former Buddie, Magennis, picked out Nisbet with a fine cross from the right. The Scotland star attempted to meet it first time on the volley and fizzed an effort well wide of goal.

Soon after we enjoyed more fortune down the right with Boyle this time delivering a powerful low cross that only just evaded the reach of Cadden who slid in at the near post. Goalkeeper Jak Alnwick was relived to gather and dived on the ball to take some pressure off his side.

It would prove only a brief flurry of activity around the St Mirren goal as we found it difficult to break down the visitors who consistently pressed us into making mistakes.

Four minutes before the half-time break the visitors stunned Easter Road and gave the vociferous St Mirren support something to celebrate by opening the scoring.

We were caught flat after pushing forward and a long clearance from Alnwick picked out Brophy on the left; the striker faced up Ryan Porteous before shifting the ball and slamming a low right foot effort beyond Macey at his near post.

Allan replaced Cadden during the break and he would play a key role in proceedings as the home side roared back.

We were immediately on the front foot with Nisbet having an effort blocked just in front of goal before McCarthy headed over his crossbar after Allan had dinked a lovely cross over Alnwick.

From the corner kick Porteous thought he had levelled with a powerful header only for the movement on the line of Boyle to cause the effort to be chalked off.

We continued to pile on the pressure with Magennis firing a free kick across the face of goal before the same player and Newell both saw efforts blocked just in front of goal.

An equaliser was coming, and it duly arrived on 56 minutes when Allan floated a wonderful cross into the back post that was met flush on the volley by McGinn to give Alnwick no chance.

There was no let up from us as we kept the pressure on the visitors’ goal with Nisbet’s shot from 18 yards deflected just wide.

From the resultant corner kick, we were awarded a penalty after Matt Millar hauled Porteous to the ground. It was a ridiculous decision by Millar to foul the Hibs man under the nose of referee Kevin Clancy having only seconds earlier been warned by the official.

Boyle took the penalty kick and finished with aplomb, smashing the ball down the middle as Alnwick dived to his right and claiming his eighth goal of the campaign.

St Mirren’s response was to introduce Ethan Erhahon and Curtis Main and it gave the Buddies fresh impetus as they came back into the game.

They were almost level when Millar’s cross from the right was toe-poked onto crossbar by Shaughnessy and Brophy was unable to turn in the rebound.

Brophy was proving a real thorn in our side this afternoon and he again went close with a fine curling effort that had Macey scrambling across goal, only to finish just wide of the far post.

With three minutes remaining the visitors found the goal they craved when Shaughnessy nipped in ahead of Josh Doig to head Scott Tanser’s cross into the net from close range.

Despite this disappointment, we could have restored our lead immediately after the restart with an Allan shot that Alan Power deflected onto the post.

In time added on Kyle McAllister drew a save from Macey with a low strike before Nisbet fired over from a free kick at the death as both teams pressed for a winner, but there would be no more goals and the spoils were shared.

Hibernian: Macey, Doig, Hanlon, Porteous, McGinn, Magennis, Boyle, Newell, Nisbett, Doyle-Hayes (Gogic 82’), Cadden (Allan 46’). Substitutes not used: Dabrowski, Wright, Wood, Stevenson, Gullan.

St Mirren: Alnwick, Tanser, Shaughnessy, McCarthy, Power, McGrath, Brophy, Reid (Main 62’), Fraser, Ronan (Erhahon 62’), Millar (McAllister 82’). Substitutes not used: Lyness, Tait, Flynn, Dennis.

Referee: Kevin Clancy.

Attendance: 13,501.