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St Mirren snatch dramatic late victory over Livingston to move into third

Stephen Robinson saw his St Mirren side secure a late win over Livingston (Steve Welsh/PA)
Stephen Robinson saw his St Mirren side secure a late win over Livingston (Steve Welsh/PA)

Ten-man St Mirren moved up to third place in the cinch Premiership table after Alex Greive’s 90th minute winner saw off Livingston 2-1.

The home side moved in front through Keanu Baccus before Jonah Ayunga was shown a straight red card for handball.

Livingston’s Sean Kelly missed the resultant penalty but the visitors then equalised through Bruce Anderson before Greive bundled home the winner late on.

St Mirren made two changes from the team that had defeated Celtic before the international break. Ryan Strain and Curtis Main dropped out, replaced by Alex Gogic and Greg Kiltie.

Livingston, in turn, made just one alteration following the win over Kilmarnock. Out dropped Cristian Montano to be replaced by James Penrice.

The visitors nearly took advantage of the swirling wind after just two minutes. Joel Nouble’s cross got caught up in the breeze and Trevor Carson had to back pedal to push it over his crossbar.

It was a similar story at the other end. Scott Tanser’s corner forced Shamal George to punch clear but only as far as Gogic who volleyed over the crossbar.

Livingston were next to threaten and Dylan Bahamboula’s driven effort took a nick on its way through for a corner.

Marcus Fraser, making his 100th St Mirren appearance, then only narrowly headed Jason Holt’s free-kick past his own goal.

A slip by Charles Dunne then let in Scott Pittman whose shot was well saved by Carson as the visitors turned up the pressure.

Livingston started the second half on the offensive. Bahamboula ghosted past Tanser only to see Carson make a smart block with his feet. The unmarked Ayo Obileye then should have done better than head Holt’s free-kick wide of goal.

St Mirren made a double change on the hour mark but one of those substitutes, Strain, lasted just seven minutes before going off with an injury.

His replacement, however, had a key role as St Mirren forged in front. Ryan Flynn’s cross was perfect for Baccus to plant his header past George for an unlikely lead on 69 minutes.

Livingston, though, hit back and should have drawn level after 76 minutes. Holt’s shot was handled by Ayunga close to the goal-line, earning the striker a red card. Kelly volunteered to take the penalty but put his effort high over the crossbar.

The visitors did find an equaliser four minutes from time. Nouble’s cross was enticing and substitute Anderson poked it home from close range.

St Mirren then won it late on when Livingston could not clear a corner and Greive turned to poke home the loose ball.