Morton 1-3 St Johnstone- Match Report

St Johnstone survive Morton scare to reach League Cup semi-finalsSt Johnstone came from behind against lower-league Morton to book their place in the Scottish League Cup semi-finals with a 3-1 win at CappielowAfter an entertaining but goalless first half, Ton striker Denny Johnstone opened the scoring for the Ladbrokes Championship side in the 51st minute with a confident finish but that was cancelled out by Steven MacLean's penalty 10 minutes later.Saints forward Michael O'Halloran put the visitors ahead in the 63rd minute before he set up substitute Chris Kane, on for Graham Cummins, for number three in a lightning counter-attack with seven minutes remaining.The Ladbrokes Premiership side, who had beaten Championship leaders Rangers at Ibrox in the last round, go into the last-four draw which will take place on November 9 at Hampden Park.There was no shadow boxing at the start of this contest as both teams were quick off the mark looking for the opener.In the sixth minute Cummins headed a Liam Craig corner off the bar with the home side, who would subsequently struggle with crosses into the box, scrambling to escape punishment.Moments later, at the other end, midfielder Ross Forbes strode forward before drilling a shot from 30 yards just past Alan Mannus' left-hand post.As the Perth side stepped up their efforts, right-back Joe Shaughnessy and Cummins came close.While Morton looked dangerous on the break, the McDiarmid Park men kept knocking on the door.Craig's long-distance drive which skimmed the bar in the 42nd minute was one of several close calls for the home side, although Johnstone headed a Forbes free-kick inches wide seconds before the interval.Six minutes after the break, as the rain got heavier, Morton stole into the lead as the Perth defence slept.Conor Pepper was allowed to make his way into the penalty area all too easily and when he picked out Johnstone the 20-year-old striker - on loan from Birmingham City - flashed his shot first-time high past Mannus from 10 yards.It took Saints several minutes to recover their composure but when Forbes inexplicably handled a Simon Lappin corner, referee Craig Thomson pointed to the spot with MacLean slamming the ball under Derek Gaston.This time it was Morton who tried to readjust but two minutes later Saints were ahead when O'Halloran turned and twisted before sending a low drive from just inside the box past Gaston and into the far corner of the net.The home side pushed forward in the final stages after Jon Scullion and Michael Tidser replace Pepper and Bobby Barr, but from a poor Morton corner St Johnstone broke brilliantly through O'Halloran and he set up Kane who curled the ball past Gaston to clinch the last-four spot

Source : PA

Source: PA