In the final game week ahead of the international break, St Mirren extended their unbeaten streak to five games after their 1-0 win at Livingston. The Buddies won their first Scottish Premiership match last weekend when they came from behind to beat Aberdeen and followed it up with a 1-0 win in Livingston. Manager Jim Goodwin had complained about bad luck previously but his team were on the right side of fortune when a horrendous error by Livingston goalkeeper Max Stryjek allowed Ethan Erhahon’s first-half strike to sneak in. Some crucial saves by St Mirren keeper Jak Alnwick helped the Buddies stretch their unbeaten run to five games.
After a disappointing start to their season with only one point from three games, St Mirren have now won back to back games and have moved up the Scottish Premiership table. They are currently on 10 points and sit in seventh position on the table. They got their season back on track after a 6-0 hammering by Celtic, after which they secured three draws and have now won six points from two games.
The major issue for St Mirren initially was a leaky defence, which caused them to lose two back to back matches. They took the lead twice in their opening game against Dundee but failed to maintain their lead as their opponents equalised twice. Since the Celtic game, St. Mirren have now kept three clean-sheets from their last five games.
The above visual includes the different positions from where St Mirren players have attempted their shots on target. As seen in the visual, St Mirren have been most effective while taking shots from the left side of the goal. The majority of their shots on target have been from positions inside the penalty area. They have averaged an xG of 1.11 every game, which indicates they have had shots on target in every game, but have failed to be clinical in some of their previous games and were not able to convert these chances.
Scott Tanser has a high xT from the dribbles and passes that he has attempted in the eight games he has played so far. Tanser plays in the left-back position for St Mirren, and as depicted in the shot maps we have seen that they are more productive from the left flank.
Tanser has played a huge role in the attacks that St. Mirren have constructed in the league. He has provided two assists so far for the Buddies. As seen in the above visual, Tanser has attempted a high number of crosses into the box and most of these crosses have a high xT. There are also some passes that Tanser has played from the right midfield area into the box which have a very high expected threat.
Another St Mirren player that has been at the heart of most of the attacks they have created is Jamie McGrath. McGrath has the third-highest number of successful dribbles in the league. He has completed 36 dribbles and also had a high xT with these dribbles.
McGrath has been playing in a free role for St Mirren and has been given the freedom by his manager to change his positioning depending on how the game is proceeding. As seen in his pass map, he has attempted passes from positions all over the pitch and has also attempted crosses into the box from both flanks. His passes into the final third have a high expected threat. McGrath has scored one goal and has also provided one assist so far. He has started each and every match in the league and is one of the most trusted player for his manager since his arrival to the club.
St Mirren have conceded 14 goals so far in the league but six of these goals came from their match against Celtic, in which they played a man down for 70 minutes of the game. Apart from that, they have conceded four goals in their last five games which is not that bad considering they secured a positive result from these games. They have the highest number of successful aerial duels and also average most successful duels per 90 minutes. Their defensive performances have improved gradually moving into the season.
St Mirren are finally finding their feet in the league and will look to maintain this momentum even after the international break. Their next game is against Ross County, who are struggling and have failed to win a single game this season. St Mirren will be hoping to capitalise on this opportunity to add more points to their tally.