Duffy: Raith win wasn’t pretty but it was a fantastic three points

Jim Duffy admitted last night’s 1-0 win at Raith Rovers was from far from pretty – but it was the very fact that his players rolled up the sleeves and dug deep in difficult circumstances that caused him to describe it as a fantastic three points.

On a rain-soaked night in Fife, skipper Lee Kilday scored with a second-half header to earn Morton a valuable victory against the Stark’s Park side.

The Ton boss always expected this to be an exceptionally challenging encounter and so was over the moon with the professional manner in which they defended their narrow lead to claim maximum points.

Speaking exclusively to gmfc.net, he beamed: “I think it was a fantastic win. It was a game where we had to roll the sleeves up, and even if we had got a 0-0 I’d have been thrilled.

“Because they’re a really competitive side and a very physical side. I don’t mean physical in terms of tackling and all that but a big, strong side.

“They also have boys like Bobby [Barr] and Declan [McManus] coming on and you’re always a wee bit wary of somebody coming back and biting you.

“So it was a very, very difficult match, a very competitive match. There weren’t too many goalmouth incidents really, but I thought we defended brilliantly, more like us – the way we have the vast majority of the season.

“In that department I thought the two centre-backs, Lee and Ricki [Lamie] with Jamie Linday and Thomas O’Ware in front of them, were outstanding tonight. We saw the game out well, which was important.

“[In] the last few minutes, we controlled the ball and took it into corners; I know that might be a bit negative but sometimes you’ve just got to see the game out and be professional. We did that, so, without it being pretty, it was a fantastic three points.”

In control … Michael Tidser was restored to the starting line-up and provided an assist                                         © David Bell

The Cappielow gaffer made four changes to the side that lose 3-0 at Queen of the South on Saturday, and he explained the thinking behind the switches.

He added: “We freshened it up tonight and it was also a wee bit tactical, to do with the opposition. We thought they’d play with [Ryan] Stevenson and [Ryan] Hardie up top, so we wanted to put Tam in front and screen a little bit.

“Jamie [McDonagh] came in because Ross [Forbes] had a dead leg and sometimes when you go and play on a heavy pitch the muscles tighten up. He’s too important a player for us to risk in that respect but it gave us an opportunity to play Jamie.

“And I always wanted to play Michael Tidser. I felt that he has been champing at the bit, and it was a great ball in for the goal and a great header from Lee. In a very tight match sometimes a set-piece can win it and thankfully it was our turn to do that tonight.

“All the boys came in and gave us a fantastic shift. It was difficult for the front players and I thought Shanks [Lawrence Shankland] put in a shift and a half on a very heavy pitch.”


Image: David Bell