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Dunfermline Ath 2-3 St Johnstone

Saints goalscorers Paul Sheerin, Kenny Deuchar and Paul MacDonald
Paul Sheerin, Kenny Deuchar and Peter MacDonald scored for Saints

St Johnstone survived a fightback from Dunfermline Athletic to lift the Scottish Football League Challenge Cup for the first time.

Paul Sheerin put the Saints ahead from the penalty spot after 13 minutes and a fine Peter MacDonald volley had them two ahead six minutes later.

Kenny Deuchar turned Sol Bamba to fire Saints further ahead after 30 minutes.

But Scott Wilson headed in a free-kick from Stephen Glass, who fired home from the penalty spot after the break.

The Pars could not find the equaliser despite intense late pressure and it will go down as another disappointment for beleaguered manager Stephen Kenny.

Their First Division rivals had responded positively to the midweek departure of their own manager, Owen Coyle, to Burnley.

And the side led by caretaker boss Sandy Stewart took the lead after Stephen Simmons was forced into a rash challenge on Steven Anderson when the Pars failed to clear a corner.


Sheerin left goalkeeper Paul Gallacher no chance with a drilled low shot from the penalty spot.

Deuchar had already sent a header just wide before his flick-on set up MacDonald 14 yards out to blast in Saints' second goal.

Gallacher beat away a fierce Deuchar drive to deny the rampant Saints.

But the striker on loan from Gretna did make it three soon after, firing low past the helpless former Scotland goalkeeper.

Kenny had sent on Darren Young for Calum Woods and the Pars immediately pulled a goal back through Wilson.

Within seconds, they were almost right back in the game as an 18-yard effort from Stevie Crawford was pushed just wide by veteran goalkeeper Alan Main.

Jim Hamilton and Stephen Glass celebrate as the Pars hit back
Stephen Glass (right) scored from the spot for Dunfermline

Crawford then turned neatly on the edge of the box before shooting too high and a Bobby Ryan drive was brilliantly beaten away by Main.

Then, on the stroke of half-time, Young rattled the post with a shot.

Saints' Rocco Quinn also saw a shot rebound off the woodwork just after the break, but it was the Pars who dominated the second 45 minutes.

And, midway through the half, it was game on when Dunfermline won a penalty for Anderson's challenge on Jim Hamilton on the edge of the area.

Glass stroked home the spot-kick and an equaliser almost arrived when Hamilton's cross was sliced against his own bar by Goran Stanic.

As the Pars threw everything forward, Mark Burchill headed straight into Main's arms from no more than six yards, but it was to be Saints' day at Dens Park.

Dunfermline: Gallacher, Woods (Young 34), Wilson, Bamba, Murphy, Ryan, Simmons (Harris 88), Glass, Crawford, Burchill, McGlinchey (Hamilton 64).
Subs Not Used: McBride, Murdoch.

Booked: Murphy, Glass, Wilson.

Goals: Wilson 37, Glass 70 pen.

St Johnstone: Main, Irvine, McManus, Anderson (Rutkiewicz 80), Stanic, Quinn, McInnes, MacDonald (Hardie 75), Deuchar, Jackson (Milne 80), Sheerin.
Subs Not Used: McLaren, Cuthbert.

Goals: Sheerin 13 pen, MacDonald 19, Deuchar 30.

Att: 6,446

Ref: E Smith

see also
Stewart interested in Saints job
25 Nov 07 |  St Johnstone
Kenny takes heart despite defeat
25 Nov 07 |  Dunfermline
Dunfermline Athletic 1-0 Ayr Utd
02 Oct 07 |  Scottish Cups
Morton 1-3 St Johnstone
02 Oct 07 |  Scottish Cups

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