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David Martindale ‘delighted’ with Livingston after ending long wait for victory

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 17 Feb 2024

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David Martindale insists he will not get carried away despite Livingston finally ending their long wait for a cinch Premiership victory against St Mirren.

Tete Yengi’s goal in added time of the first half was enough for the Lions to claim their first win in 18 league matches.

Livi have now cut the gap between themselves and Ross County to just three points, with the teams set to face each other in Dingwall next Saturday.

“I am happy for the group,” he said. “The group has to take massive credit and I am delighted for them.

“When you are in an adverse situation and every week that hole gets bigger, there is a lot of anxiety and stress.

“The squad and staff have stayed buoyant – they have always been positive and I am delighted for them.”

The Livi boss was thrilled by the display of his goalkeeper Shamal George, who kept out Mikael Mandron’s late penalty to secure all three points.

George has been in and out of the team since the arrival of Michael McGovern last month, but showed his quality in a man-of-the-match performance against Saints.

“Michael McGovern has been a big turning point for Shamal,” Martindale added.

“Shamal has all the ability in the world, he is a great kid, trains impeccably well and I think he needed taken out his comfort zone.

“Michael coming in has done that, it has shown Shamal that if he’s not bang at it in games then he’s probably going to get dropped.

“I thought he was the best player on the park – hopefully that’s him kicked on a bit.”

Assistant boss Diarmuid O’Carroll praised what he beleived was a “brilliant” display by St Mirren, despite falling to defeat at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

The Buddies threw everything at the Livingston goal in the second half as they looked to drag themselves back into the game.

“I thought we were brilliant, it was just one of those days in front of goal,” O’Carroll said.

“We came here with a gameplan, we wanted to get the ball down and play, try create chances, put the ball into the box and sustain attacks – they did that to the letter.

“I think on any other day we win that game based on chances, but credit to Livingston, they battled, they fought and it shows you that they are right there for Davie.”

O’Carroll confirmed that Saints boss Stephen Robinson had been involved in a disagreement with a supporter after the full-time whistle.

Robinson appeared to be led away by Alex Gogic, and his number two insists the gaffer will always stand up for his players.

“I did see it. People are passionate about the game, there’s passion from our side,” he added.

“From a fans’ perspective, you come, you pay your money and you obviously want your team to win.

“We as a collective always go over (to the fans), whether we win, lose or draw.

“People pay their money and they can say what they want – but from our point of view, we can’t ask for much more of them.”

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