A second half goal from Chris Kane was St Johnstone's reward for persistence against a well-drilled and organised Dunfermline side. St Johnstone had much of the possession in a match which carried opportunities for both sides, Dunfermline’s defence and tracking midfielders held the opposition’s first half attacks and looked as though they would seal a deserved point until Kane’s headed goal found the away team’s net. This win saw St Johnstone’s development squad continue their impressive start to the season and keep hold of second place in the SPFL Development league but Dunfermline could also take some inspiration from a positive away performance.
The match began ambitiously with the home side taking a shot at goal straight from kick off. It may have been unsuccessful but proved a benchmark for Saint’s attacking attitude.
The first half an hour of the game was characterised by St Johnstone making runs into the opposition half but finding no gaps in Dunfermline’s tight-knit defensive line. Many of the attacking chances came from corners and Jason Kerr came close with a glancing header floating past the wrong side of the post by inches.
Dunfermline were restricted primarily to counter-attacks but when these opportunities arose, the away team looked very dangerous, with Paul-Joseph Crossan making some piercing runs into the Saints defensive third. As Dunfermline grew in confidence, a busy McDiarmid park urged their home side into some counter-attacks of their own. Full-back Craig Thomson showed his first team credentials with some pacey and unstoppable runs down the wing and his crossing game provided Saints with yet more attacking corners.
The first half ended with a shot from St Johnstone winger Connor McLaren who cut in from the left and shoot convincingly towards the goal, only to see his effort find the fingertips of Dunfermline Athletic’s David Hutton. Dunfermline’s back line of Duncan, McClair, Orru and Potter did an excellent job of restricting a confident home side to long range opportunities and attacking corners and could be proud of their first half display.