Inverness move off bottom spot

PA Sport
Andrew Shinnie

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Andrew Shinnie

Inverness have moved off the bottom of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League table after winning 2-1 at St Mirren.

Jonny Hayes curled home from 25 yards in the 69th minute and Caley Thistle held on for their second win over St Mirren this season to jump three places and consign Aberdeen to bottom spot.

Inverness had dominated the first half after Hayes set up Andrew Shinnie for an 11th-minute opener following a mistake from Marc McAusland, but St Mirren striker Steven Thompson atoned for an early miss when he headed home in first-half injury-time.

Saints shot themselves in the foot when McAusland played a loose pass across his 18-yard box that was picked up by Hayes. The Irishman could have shot himself but he played a composed square ball to Shinnie, who stroked home from 12 yards.

The goal was another personal disaster for McAusland, who gifted Celtic an early opener last weekend with a poor clearance.

Saints could not immediately turn the tide. Billy McKay, preferred to Gregory Tade up front for Inverness, got a shot in before Greg Tansey drove just wide from 20 yards. However, Gary Teale put in some dangerous balls towards the end of the half and St Mirren levelled two minutes into injury time.

Ryan Esson was forced to push over Jeroen Tesselaar's over-hit cross for a corner and Thompson sneaked round the back to head home Teale's inswinging delivery.

David Barron replaced Lee Mair at half-time with Haddad switching roles again to centre-back and both sides threatened in the early stages.

The game grew increasingly scrappy before Hayes lit it up. Tansey passed up the chance to shoot after a clever inside pass from Richie Foran but worked the ball out to Hayes, who turned and curled the ball just inside the far post.

St Mirren brought on Graham Carey and Jon McShane and pushed for an equaliser but Caley Thistle defended their lead resolutely, and Esson secured the victory in injury time when he got down well to hold Thompson's glancing header.

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