Saints continued their dismal form of late with a 4-1 deafeat at home to Dundee United on Tuesday evening. The line up saw starting places fro David McClune, Graeme Jones and debut start Sammy Youssouf, whilst Djebaili and MacDonald were dropped from the squad.
Saints went into the break with a three goal deficit and a seemingly mountainous task ahead of them for the second period. Over the balance of play Saints really should have done better with a couple of gilt edged chances falling the way of Youssef and Hartley in the first forty five minutes.
United made their intentions clear from the word go with Lilley breaking on goal after just a couple of minutes. His shot was deflected and the resulting inswinging corner was cleared off the line by Paul Hartley.
Debut boy Sammy Youssef had a great chance to score in the fifth minute when he made space to shoot in the box but his shot was saved by the legs of Gallagher in the United goal and Hartley’s follow up shot was deflected wide. Hartley tried his luck himself ten minutes later when a great run from the halfway line ended with a shot going narrowly over the bar from the edge of the box.
United scored their second on the half hour mark. Lilley broke clean through the defence amidst suggestions of offside before shooting past Miller from fifteen yards. Miller scored their second seven minutes later after McIntyre beat McCluskey on the left wing and sent a low cross to the feet of Charlie Miller who side footed the ball into the corner from twelve yards. Their third came on the stroke of half time as Lilley grabbed his second of the night with a shot from the edge of the penalty box.
Saints had efforts through Hartley and Youssef although both pulled their shots wide of Gallagher’s right post.
If the first half was bad for Saints, the second half only got worse. Within five minutes of the restart Lilley notched his hat-trick and United’s fourth, beating Miller with a shot from just outside the penalty area. They almost scored again five minutes later although Easton crashed his effort against the bar from close range.
Saints grabbed a consolation with a Youssef header from a Hartley freekick on the right although it was United who came closest to scoring again with Thompson and Miller both coming close for the Dundee team.
SAINTS: Miller, Murray, Dods, McCluskey, McClune, Falconer (Russell 86), Kane, Hartley, Lynch (Maher 77), Jones (Parker 55), Youssouf.
SUBS NOT USED: Cuthbert, Connolly.
DUNDEE UTD: Gallagher, McCunnie, Lauchlan, Wright, Miller, Thompson, Fullarton, Hannah, McIntyre, Lilley, Easton.
REF: John Underhill
MoM: Sammy Youssef