St Mirren 2-0 Heart of Midlothian
Saturday 24th November 2018, KO 15:00 | Ladbrokes Premiership | St Mirren Park
Hearts fell to a 2-0 defeat to St Mirren in today’s Scottish Premiership match at the Simple Digital Arena </
A second half double from Adam Hammill was the difference between the sides as the Jambos’ by ans large failed to trouble the Saints' goal.
Craig Levein made one change from the side that lost 1-0 at home to Kilmarnock before the international break, with Sean Clare coming into the side and Olly Lee taking a place on the substitutes bench.
Steven MacLean should have given the visitors an early lead in the fourth minute, when a Michael Smith cross into the area was flicked onto the back post area by Craig Wighton, but the forward hit the side netting.
St Mirren began to come into the game more and the main thrust of their attacks came down the right side via Stephen McGinn. McGinn got in behind Ben Garuccio, but before he could get a shot off at goal, Jimmy Dunne appeared with a superb last-gasp tackle.
The home side weren’t afraid to mix their play, and direct football led to their next chance. A long ball was headed clear by Dunne, but Kyle Magennis got to the ball before Clevid Dikamona, and his shot rattled off the crossbar with Bobby Zlamal beaten.
McGinn came close again just before the interval, when he again found space in the area but his shot was saved by Zlamal.
St Mirren took the lead in the first minute of the second half, when Adam Hamill collected the ball 35 yards from goal and, on the spin, fired in a sensational volley that flew past Zlamal.
Hearts rallied, and a couple of half-chances fell their way in the box after some dangerous crosses from Garuccio and Smith, but despite some pinball action in the area, they couldn’t convert, to their cost.
The hosts doubled their lead shortly after when a cross into the box wasn’t cleared by the Hearts defence, and Hammill was able to pass the ball into the corner of the net.
Craig Levein introduced all three subs within the first 15 minutes of the second half in a bid to change the game, and one sub - Olly Lee - almost helped Hearts grab a lifeline when his curling free-kick was headed in by Arnaud Djoum, but the Cameroonian was offside and thus, the goal disallowed.
With ten minutes remaining, the home side almost added a third as they hit the woodwork for a second time after an Ethan Erhahon cross into the area was met by Simeon Jackson, but the Canadian striker’s hooked effort was tipped onto the bar by Zlamal.
The Jambos pushed forward in numbers but were unable to convert any possession into efforts on target, and slipped to defeat.
St Mirren: Rogers, P. McGinn, S. McGinn, Magennis, Jackson (Mullen, 83'), Baird, McShane, Jones, Hodson, Erhahon, Hamill (Smith, 70'). Subs: Lyness, Cooke, Willock, MacPherson, Eckersley.
Hearts: Zlamal, Smith, Dunne, Haring, Clare (Lee, 54'), Djoum, Wighton (Mulraney, 46'), Garuccio (Mitchell, 62'), MacLean, Dikamona, Morrison. Subs: Doyle, Bozanic, Cochrane, Godinho.
Referee: Craig Thomson