Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

St Johnstone stars’ play-off pedigree revealed: From Michael O’Halloran’s Wembley drama to Shaun Rooney v Callum Booth

Shaun Rooney and Callum Booth faced each other in 2019.
Shaun Rooney and Callum Booth faced each other in 2019.

Play-off football is all new to St Johnstone.

But plenty of their players have tasted the high stakes, nerve-shredding end-of-season contests with previous clubs both north and south of the border.

Courier Sport looks back on their experiences down the years.

From Michael O’Halloran’s Wembley penalty shoot-out that went all the way to the goalkeepers to Callum Booth’s trauma with Dundee United, there have been plenty of moments to remember and forget.


Zander Clark

In the month Saints were lifting the Scottish Cup eight years ago, Clark was trying to help loan club Queen of the South into the Premiership.

In the quarter-final the Doonhamers beat Falkirk 2-1 at Palmerston but lost 3-1 in the return leg, with future Tommy Wright recruit Blair Alston scoring the winner moments from the conclusion of extra-time.

Zander Clark playing for QoS at Ibrox.

This was a golden era for Queens and they made the play-offs the following year as well.

Rangers knocked them out – by just one goal.


Shaun Rooney

Saints’ cup final talisman has also had a couple of (failed) attempts at play-off promotion in his career.

In 2015, Rooney was part of the Queen’s Park side trying to get out of League Two that got past Arbroath but then lost 2-1 on aggregate to Stenhousemuir.

Four years later he and Jamie McCart were Inverness Caledonian Thistle team-mates (coming up against Booth) when the Highlanders were well beaten by Dundee United after knocking out Ayr United.


Liam Gordon

That 2015 Queen’s Park v Arbroath contest featured Gordon – on loan from Hearts – in maroon.

The current Perth captain got a stage further with Peterhead a couple of years later but they were thrashed 7-2 over the two-leg final by Forfar.

Liam Gordon during Peterhead's play-off against Forfar.
Liam Gordon during Peterhead’s play-off against Forfar.

Jamie McCart

At least there will be someone in the Saints defence on Friday night who knows what it’s like to emerge out of the play-offs victorious.

McCart was on loan from Celtic at Alloa in 2018 when they beat Dumbarton (after extra-time) to secure promotion to the Championship.

Jamie McCart celebrating with Alloa.
Jamie McCart celebrating with Alloa.

As mentioned above, 2019 with Caley Thistle was a different story, though.


Jacob Butterfield

Given Butterfield has spent the vast majority of his career in the English lower leagues, it would have been a big surprise if he hadn’t sampled some play-off action.

That happened just the once – 2016 at Derby County, in the company of Craig Bryson.

The Rams lost to Hull City and Butterfield only played the second leg of the semi-final.


Liam Craig

Craig’s two seasons away from McDiarmid Park with Hibs brought back-to-back play-off heartbreak.

The 2014 season’s climax was particularly brutal – and relevant to Saints’ current situation – given the Edinburgh club were the Premiership side when they lost to Hamilton Accies.

After taking a two-goal lead back to Easter Road, Hibs collapsed in front of their own supporters and ended up being defeated on penalties.

The following year Rangers beat them 2-1 in the semi-final.


Ali Crawford

One man’s East Road trauma was another man’s career high.

Crawford was a key man for Accies in 2014.

He is Saints’ most successful play-off performer, having helped Hamilton beat Dundee United in 2017 when they were the top-flight side.

Even Crawford doesn’t have a 100% record, however.

In 2019, he played for Doncaster Rovers who were beaten on penalties by Charlton Athletic.

He did convert his spot-kick, mind you.

Ali Crawford converts his penalty for Doncaster.
Ali Crawford converts his penalty for Doncaster.

Callum Booth

If Crawford’s record is the best of the current Perth squad, Booth’s is the worst.

There was a 2010 play-off final defeat to Forfar when he was on loan at Arbroath, then more misery as a Partick Thistle player in 2018 as the Premiership Jags were defeated by big underdogs Livingston.

Inverness defender Danny Devine shared the pain of that one.

The unwanted Booth hat-trick was completed with United the year after.

His last kick of the ball as a Tangerines’ player was the final penalty saved by St Mirren keeper Vaclav Hladky.

It was a shoot-out that still puts a shiver down the spine of United fans as every one of Robbie Neilson’s volunteers failed to score.

Cammy MacPherson was an unused substitute.

I’m sure he doesn’t mention it!


Craig Bryson

Before the 2016 disappointment alongside Butterfield, Bryson had got even closer to the Premier League with Derby two years earlier.

This should really have been the Rams’ day.

Playing against 10 men at Wembley for the last half-hour, chance after chance was missed before Bobby Zamora scored for Harry Redknapp’s QPR in the last minute.


Michael O’Halloran

Think you know everything about a three-time cup winner with St Johnstone?

Go straight to the top of the class if a young O’Halloran’s contribution to a memorable Wembley final rings a bell.

As a 21-year-old on a two-month loan from Bolton Wanderers, he was introduced during extra-time of Sheffield United’s clash against Huddersfield Town, with Championship football at stake for the two Yorkshire clubs.

O’Halloran made it 6-6 in sudden death of the penalty shoot-out (two kicks after Harry Maguire) but when it was the turn of the two goalkeepers to step up, United’s Steve Simonsen was the one who missed.

3 St Johnstone talking points: A timely play-off warning, Callum Davidson’s 2 Inverness selection dilemmas and a summer of goalkeeper change

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]
Tags

Conversation

[[title_reg]]

Please enter the name you would like to appear on your comments. (It doesn’t have to be your real name - but nothing rude please, we are a polite bunch!) Use a combination of eight or more characters that includes an upper and lower case character, and a number.

By registering with [[site_name]] you agree to our Terms and Conditions and our Privacy Policy

Or sign up with

Facebook Google

[[content_reg_complete]]

[[title_login]]

Or login with

Forgotten your password?

[[title]]