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St Johnstone 1-2 Hibs: 10 man Saints sunk by late double

Referee Euan Anderson shows a red card to Craig Bryson.
Referee Euan Anderson shows a red card to Craig Bryson.

Ten-man St Johnstone were sunk by two late Hibs goals in a game that was defined by Craig Bryson’s red card.

The Perth side had got themselves into a one-goal lead through captain Liam Gordon but had to play the whole second half with a man less.

They held out heroically until the 83rd minute, however constant Hibs pressure eventually paid off, with two strikes in quick succession securing three points for Jack Ross’s side.

The visitors were the stronger team for most of the first half and felt aggrieved to be on the wrong side of a close offside call just six minutes in when Kevin Nisbet was denied an early opener.

Saints toiled to create chances at the other end, with a Michael O’Halloran 20-yarder that went past the post the nearest they came to breaking the deadlock.

St Johnstone’s Liam Gordon scores to make it 1-0.

On 41 minutes they got themselves in front from their first corner of the game, though.

Ali Crawford’s dead-ball came back to him, he controlled it superbly and from his second cross, Gordon scored with a back post header.

Josh Campbell headed against the post a minute later and then in first half stoppage time Bryson went off his feet in a midfield challenge that saw him sent off for a second yellow card.

It was a costly error of judgment.

One way traffic

Eetu Vertainen had started his first match for Saints but the Finn was taken off at half-time so Callum Davidson could get another midfielder, Cammy MacPherson, on to the pitch.

The second half was pretty much attack v defence from the restart.

Chris Cadden struck the crossbar with an angled shot and there was a second Nisbet goal disallowed, this time for a push before he headed past Zander Clark.

The Saints keeper produced a magnificent reflex save to thwart substitute Jamie Murphy on 68 minutes but Hibs eventually got their equaliser on 83 minutes when Nisbet finished off a lovely move through the heart of the home defence.

One became two three minutes later.

Scott Allan skipped past MacPherson and teed up Murphy for a simple back post winner.

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