Morton 0 - 1 Queen Of The South

Morton 0
Queen Of The South 1 - O'Connor (47)

Att - 2,804

An experienced Queens team used all of their know-how to take home three points from their trip to Cappielow on Saturday.

Morton started with a front pairing of £40,000 new man Iain Russell and Bobby Linn. Michael Gardyne -our other new signing- started on the bench. Other changes from our last match included Kieran McAnespie in at left back for the injured Alex Walker, Kevin Finlayson in for Jay Shields who was suspended and as was already mentioned the lackadaisical Jamie Stevenson and Chris Templeman both dropped to the bench for the Linn / Russell front pairing.

Before the match had started I thought Jim McInally had made a couple of mistakes in his team selection. I don't think Chris Templeman deserved to be dropped. He also provides something none of our other strikers could in his ability to hold the ball up and link with those around him. I thought that Russell and Linn were too alike to play up front together. Also I don't believe Bobby Linn could have been in the right frame of mind to start this match after his recent terrible loss. He may have told the manager otherwise but I don't think that could have been the case and I don't make that remark lightly as I have been through the same thing myself but I do understand Linn's reasons for wanting to play.

We never really got going in this match until the last 15 minutes particularly because Neil MacFarlane and Stevie Tosh bossed the midfield. Personally I don't think it was a coincidence that we started to receive all the possession after Tosh and MacFarlane were substituted in the 69th and 76th minutes respectively. Both remained calm in possession and controlled the tempo of the game. One of these two would have been an absolutely ideal signing for us this season.

Our best efforts came from a Russell long range effort over the top and his hooked effort on the turn that ended up straight in the keeper's arms. In the second half Chris Templeman had a couple of efforts, one was blazed over and the others were weak trundling efforts. For all his good work Templeman really lets himself down with his finishing. He lacks accuracy and power and really needs to work on this element of his game. I'd also suggest that he works on his ability to attack headers in the box. He is now quite good at flicking the ball on or heading it down but he never uses his height to attack crosses and power headers in to the back of the net. Templeman did have a header cleared off the line and I might be be being over critical here but I thought if his heading ability was that bit better he would have scored.

However I would say that Templeman had a positive impact when he came on and I'd think that it should be him partnering either Russell or Linn up front from now on. Gardyne showed a couple of nice touches (cliche alert) but didn't have much impact. Russell worked hard but received little service. I'm hopeful that both will turn out to be good signings for Morton. Dean Keenan was probably Morton's man of the match as he battled for everything and his distribution was better than it has been recently. I don't want to sound harsh especially when you have guys like Chris Millar and Jamie Stevenson who are far more talented but not nearly as brave or willing to dig in but we really need a higher standard of midfielder if we are to compete in this division.

Back to the game. Inevitably the winning goal was scored by none other than ex-Morton man Sean O'Connor- who I really liked in his loan spell with us. Morton's defending was atrocious as O'Connor was allowed the space and time to pick his spot and then firmly place a low effort past Robinson. Queens nearly scored a second near the end but Robinson pulled off an excellent save by diving low to block Scotland U-20 midfielder Jamie Adam's finish.

Another home defeat at what had become fortress Cappielow in recent seasons. The young boys in this Morton team are going to have to learn quickly or we could be in for a lot more results like this this season.

Morton (4-4-2):

1. Robinson - 6
2. Keenan - 7
3. McAnespie - 7
4. Harding - 5
5. Greacen - 6
6. Finlayson - 6 (12. Stevenson - 78 mins)
7. Millar - 5 (15. Gardyne -58 mins - 5)
8. Linn - 5 (14. Templeman - 58 mins - 7)
9. Russell - 6
10. Weatherson - 6
11. McAlister - 6

Subs Not Used:

16. Graham
20. McGurn

Booked : Harding

Queen of the South: MacDonald, Paton, Thomson, Lauchlan, McQuilken, Burns, MacFarlane (Bingham 76), Scally, Tosh (Adams 68), Dobbie (Mole 68), O'Connor. Subs Not Used: Harris, Grindlay

My man of the match : Neil MacFarlane (Queen of the South)

Sponsors man of the match : Dean Keenan

Matchday Programme (Click to enlarge)

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