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QUEEN OF THE SOUTH 2 : 1 St MIRREN 2nd October 2004
Rating: 7.10
Rating: 6.99
Rating: 7.35
Rating: 7.42
Rating: 7.31
S1 1
Rating: 8.07
Rating: 6.72
Rating: 6.96
Rating: 6.86
S3 1
Rating: 7.53
Rating: 8.36
S1 - 58
Rating: 5.66
S2 - 82
S3 - 85
Members of the Internet Fan Club can award players marks out of ten for their performance today. The player with the most points awarded in the two days following a match will be the IFC Man of the Match. All of the points will then be added to a running total for each player and the results published in the mom League Table.

Name or IFC No.
At last .. a home win .. and what a game too. A classic 'game of two halves' with Queens out passing and outplaying the table toppers in the first half whilst racking up a two goal lead and then in the second, obviously just to give the fans value for money, sitting back and letting the Buddies mount attack after attack with all but one fruitless.

In terms of team lines, with Paton on the bench and McColligan back in it was Burns on the right and Bowey on the left with Bagan and McColligan in the centre. Other than that there were no on-field alterations. Paton started on the bench and Stephen Payne was not listed as Chris Armstrong made a re-appearance.

The Queens side looked fired up from the start and within only five minutes had taken the lead as a Tommy English foray down the left allowed him the space to cross onto the head of Paul Burns at the near post, his header beating Hinchcliffe all ends up with the former Arbroath 'keeper only able to admire Burnsey's header as it hit the back of the net.

Hinchcliffe can only watch as Burnsey's header heads for the back of the net
Queens continued to press with a shell shocked Saints side looking disjointed as they attempted to re-group. Brian McLaughlin was relishing the opportunity to take apart the Saints midfield and it was a through ball from the wee man that allowed David McNiven to score with a trademark low hard placed drive into the bottom corner to increase the lead to two with only fifteen minutes gone.

And moments later McLaughlin only seemed to need to chip the 'keeper to make it three but delayed just a fraction too long and Hinchcliffe collected comfortably. It was however all Queens in the first period with St Mirren changing things very early as Simon Lappin was clearly unhappy at being removed in favour of Laurie Ellis as early as the thirtieth minute. Perhaps they reckoned that Ellis could get more change from Gary Wood than Lappin had! On thirty five minutes David McNiven reached a Tommy English cross just ahead of Brian McLaughlin but his header was just wide and then with five minutes of the half to go McNiven made a great run down the left to feed Brian McLaughlin who delayed in favour of a square run across the box with a ball back to the feet of Brian McColligan, his effort though was straight at Hinchcliffe.

The final few minutes of the half belonged to St Mirren as they won a series of corners thanks to some 'keystone cop' defending in the centre of the box, Colin Scott being called upon to make a good save down low to his left as the half ended.

The second half started with some more 'self destruct' stuff as the defence played 'after you' in the box. Queens did have some pressure though and a break orchestrated by Brian McLaughlin saw English played in and feeding Steve Bowey who had the angle cut down very well by Hinchcliffe as the big 'keeper stood his ground and forced Bowser to fire wide of the mark.

The biggest negative of the match came in 58 minutes as Paul Burns chased down a long ball with Andy Millen looking to clear, it appeared as though Millen cleared the ball but it struck Paul Burns and as Burns followed through he fell across the prone Millen. It takes a lot to put the 'wee man' down but this time he was down and it looked serious. It would later transpire that the injury was two broken ribs that will see him miss between six and eight weeks - a major blow to Queens. He was replaced by Eric Paton as a straight swap.

Burns lies with two broken ribs after a 50/50 challenge
Queens were still having some joy despite lots of St Mirren pressure, Steve Bowey was again clean through on goal in a carbon copy of his earlier chance but this time Hinchcliffe saved with one hand. Saints though were pressing harder and with Queens content to sit deep it was backs to wall stuff in the Palmerston rear guard. Their best chance of the match coming from a corner that Broadfoot crashed against the bar from six yards out with Scott beaten.

Broadfoot heads against the cross bar
Three minutes later and fortunately after Queens had experienced the earlier unmarked rear post header a second came in from an identical corner and from the same player, Broadfoot, this time it was on target but David Bagan had been placed on the rear post and headed it off the line to safety.

Bagan heads clear off the line
Saints were certainly on top in this period, however Queens looked comfortable and happy to play on the break, infact some of the best football came from Queens with neat interpassing play from McLaughlin, McNiven, Bowey and McNiven again seeing a goal bound shot blocked by the fortunate foot of a defender on the six-yard box. A goal was coming from the Buddies and come it did and in the usual way for opposition at Palmerston - a deflected effort that wrong footed Colin Scott and spun into the back of the net from substitute John Baird. Fifteen minutes to go and Queens defending even more resolutely than before.

Scotty decided to make some changes to use up what time he could and Emilio Jaconelli was introduced for master playmaker Brian McLaughlin and a few minutes later David McNiven was replaced by Lee George, the task of both lads being to harry the opposition and keep the ball as much as possible. Jaconelli though could have sealed it for Queens in the dying moments of the match as he broke through but 'keeper Hinchcliffe was some ten yards outside his box and blocked Jaconelli's progress although whether his hands were used or not only TV replay's tomorrow will tell, in any case the referee saw no wrong so Hinchie stayed on the park and Queens lost the chance to wrap up the points comfortably.

The final action of the half saw Colin Scott get down well to smother a Paatelainen header and that was that - a first home win for Queens, a first defeat for Saints.

A couple of weeks off now until we welcome old boss John Connolly back at Palmerston with his new charges St Johnstone - let's ensure that it's not a happy homecoming!

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