Livingston 1-3 Kilmarnock: Alex Dyer’s recover from loss of early goal to win


Chris Burke scores a penalty to give Kilmarnock the lead before half-time
Chris Burke scored a penalty to give Kilmarnock the lead before half-time

Kilmarnock shrugged off their recent Covid-19 troubles – and the loss of an early goal – to beat Livingston in the Scottish Premiership.

A number of Kilmarnock players returned after almost an entire first-team squad were forced to self-isolate.

Scott Pittman gave Livingston an early lead, but Aaron Tshibola and a Chris Burke penalty turned the tables.

And a horror mistake from home goalkeeper Robbie McCrorie allowed Greg Kiltie to add a third.

The sides were level on points before the game, but Kilmarnock now move up to fifth, while Livingston drop to eighth.

With three wins in four in August and September, Kilmarnock were in good shape before six players tested positive for coronavirus and gave manager Dyer a selection headache.

After forfeiting a League Cup tie at Falkirk, then being swept aside by Dunfermline in midweek, Dyer was able to make eight changes for the trip to in-form Livingston.

But it looked liked the home side were on course for five wins in a row after early dominance paid off. Julien Serrano raced on to Alan Forrest’s pass, played a neat ball across to Pittman, who drove in.

Kilmarnock were soon level, though, when Burke’s powerful shot was brilliantly saved low down by McCrorie, only for the ball to fall into the path of Tshibola, who just had to touch it over the line.

It was almost two when Burke cut inside and curled a wonderful cross to the back post and Tshibola was inches away from nudging it in.

But the second soon arrived when Pittman tripped Alan Power and Burke slotted the penalty kick.

Livingston were enjoying the majority of possession, but they could not make anything work for them in the box and they conceded a third when Zeno Ibsen Rossi’s looping cross slipped through McCrorie’s hands, and Kiltie was there to knock it into an empty net.

The home side kept battling. Nicky Devlin’s ball across goal was nicked on to the far post, before Forrest then thumped a shot off the same upright a minute later.

But despite further opportunities from Efe Ambrose and Marvin Bartley, and from Jay Emmanuel-Thomas who hit the crossbar late on, Livingston did not force a meaningful save from Danny Rogers.

And, although they played the majority of the second 45 minutes in Kilmarnock’s half, it was a frustrating day for Gary Holt’s men.

Man of the match – Chris Burke

Chris Burke and Aaron Tshibola
Burke was pivotal in Kilmarnock’s fight-back on the right hand side.

What did we learn?

Livingston had won four games in a row, and when they took the lead they had an opportunity to move up to fifth in the Premiership.

But their decision making was poor. They didn’t test Kilmarnock goalkeeper Rogers enough when they were on top, and defensively they were opened up far too easily.

Kilmarnock were understandably disjointed at the beginning, with the recent disruption at the club and eight changes to the side having an affect. They had requested the game to be postponed, a request denied by Livingston.

But they were clinical and dug in, even when second best for much of the contest.

What they said

What’s next?

Livingston travel to league leaders Rangers next Sunday (15:00 BST), while Kilmarnock host Hibernian a day earlier (15:00).

Player of the match

BurkeChris Burke

Livingston

  1. Squad number15Player namePoplatnik

  2. Squad number27Player nameGuthrie

  3. Squad number1Player nameMcCrorie

  4. Squad number8Player namePittman

  5. Squad number25Player nameEfe Ambrose

  6. Squad number12Player nameSerrano

  7. Squad number18Player nameHolt

  8. Squad number11Player nameForrest

  9. Squad number6Player nameBartley

  10. Squad number22Player nameTiffoney

  11. Squad number2Player nameDevlin

  12. Squad number17Player nameRobinson

  13. Squad number9Player nameEmmanuel-Thomas

  14. Squad number10Player nameSibbald

Kilmarnock

  1. Squad number29Player nameBurke

  2. Squad number10Player nameKiltie

  3. Squad number6Player namePower

  4. Squad number27Player nameTshibola

  5. Squad number11Player nameKabamba

  6. Squad number4Player nameDikamona

  7. Squad number18Player nameWaters

  8. Squad number7Player nameMcKenzie

  9. Squad number14Player nameRossi

  10. Squad number8Player nameDicker

  11. Squad number23Player nameRogers

  12. Squad number19Player namePinnock

  13. Squad number5Player nameBroadfoot

  14. Squad number21Player nameMulumbu

  15. Squad number9Player nameBrophy

Line-ups

Livingston

  • 1McCrorie
  • 2Devlin
  • 25AmbroseBooked at 90mins
  • 27GuthrieBooked at 84mins
  • 12Serrano
  • 6BartleyBooked at 66mins
  • 18Holt
  • 17RobinsonSubstituted forPoplatnikat 68′minutes
  • 8Pittman
  • 11ForrestSubstituted forSibbaldat 72′minutes
  • 22TiffoneyBooked at 27minsSubstituted forEmmanuel-Thomasat 54′minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Brown
  • 5Fitzwater
  • 9Emmanuel-Thomas
  • 10Sibbald
  • 13Lokotsch
  • 15Poplatnik
  • 29Taylor-Sinclair
  • 32Stryjek
  • 33Lawson

Kilmarnock

  • 23Rogers
  • 14Rossi
  • 5Broadfoot
  • 4Dikamona
  • 18Waters
  • 6Power
  • 27TshibolaSubstituted forMulumbuat 85′minutes
  • 8Dicker
  • 29BurkeSubstituted forMcKenzieat 70′minutes
  • 11KabambaSubstituted forBrophyat 70′minutes
  • 10KiltieSubstituted forPinnockat 77′minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Haunstrup
  • 7McKenzie
  • 9Brophy
  • 12Whitehall
  • 16Doyle
  • 19Pinnock
  • 20Cameron
  • 21Mulumbu
  • 32Brindley

Live Text





BBC News