St Mirren 3 Aberdeen 1 – Jim Goodwin dealt sucker blow on Paisley return as Saints given THREE penalties
JIM GOODWIN was penalized again – when St Mirren made him pay the fine on his return to Paisley.
In a Christmas bang, the Buddies came from behind against ten-man Aberdeen after scoring two penalties and missing another.
Matty Kennedy put the Dons ahead in the tenth minute but their captain Anthony Stewart was sent off after knocking out the brilliant Jonah Ayuna seven minutes before the break.
Mark O’Hara’s penalty hit the post, then Dons keeper Kelle Roos before going in, then the Buddies skipper rushed home from the point in the 53rd minute after Roos brought Curtis Main down.
Despite being a man down, the Dons had the hosts late on the ropes but they couldn’t find an equalizer and Greg Kiltie sealed the win with Roos stranded from a corner.
Goodwin – who had described the injury-time defeat to Gers in midweek as the toughest of his managerial career – has now missed three defeats from three and has been ridiculed by some home fans who used to support him when he left.
This was the Buddies’ first match in six weeks after their match with Motherwell was frozen. In contrast, the Dons played their third game in eight days following those losses to Celtic and Rangers.
Goodwin had brought Kennedy in for Jayden Richardson – and the ex-Kilmarnock boy soon made an impression.
He got close after latching on to a ball and smashed in a shot from a tight angle that hit Trevor Carson but bounced off the post.
However, Kennedy celebrated just seconds later when he unleashed a left foot from long range that moved out of the keeper’s reach.
It was the perfect start for Goodwin, who had felt the heat of the Dons fans before his first return to the club, which he left for Pittodrie in February.
But instead of building on that opening, the Dons were pushed back by the rampant buddies.
Ethan Erhahon shot wide when a weak Roos Punch fell on him, then Ayunga shot wide. Ayunga was involved again as the Buddies finally scored the goal their pressure deserved.
Don’s skipper Stewart had looked shaky and when he hesitated at the ball Ayunga whipped him off. Stewart’s reaction was to pull on him when Ayunga hit the box.
Referee Nick Walsh awarded a free-kick and then flashed red at Stewart, but VAR Steven Kirkland told him to switch to a penalty on the second look.
Roos tapped O’Hara’s free-kick correctly but was unlucky when the ball hit the post and then bounced off it. Aynuga looked like he could put the Buddies in front but Roos scraped his header away.
At the break, Goodwin replaced Duk and Leighton Clarkson with Jack MacKenzie and Ryan Duncan. It didn’t improve their luck as the Dons missed another penalty less than six minutes into the restart.
Roos was slow off his line when O’Hara played a pass into the box and was only able to sweep Curtis Main off his feet as he made a desperate attempt to reach the ball first. This time, O’Hara made no mistake firing home.
The third penalty came in the 62nd minute when Ross McCrorie rolled over Ayunga as he raced for a through ball.
O’Hara let Ayunga take, but Roos went to his left to block.
The Dons were close to equalizing when Ylber Ramadani fired a shot off the bar.
After it was announced that eight minutes of stoppage time would be played, Roos headed up to a corner and touched the ball.
But a clearance was not handled by the Dons defense and Kiltie latched on to the loose ball and rolled home.
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