Match Preview: Queen of the South


Queen of the South versus MORTON

Saturday 4 February 2017

Palmerston Park, Dumfries

Kick-off 3pm

Match Preview

Morton are on the road for the second successive weekend as they travel to Dumfries tomorrow to play Queen of the South and attempt to make it a fifth consecutive win in all competitions.

Palmerston was the scene of the Ton’s biggest victory of the season – a sensational 5-0 rout that sent the then-league leading Doonhamers into a tailspin that saw them lose seven of their next eight matches.

A change in management followed, with Gary Naysmith replacing Gavin Skelton at the helm at the beginning of December and overseeing an upturn in their fortunes in recent weeks.

Since losing 1-0 at Cappielow on Christmas Eve, Queens had gone four games unbeaten – recording away wins at Dumbarton and St Mirren – before losing narrowly to table-topping Hibs last weekend.

Jim Duffy’s men head south in fine fettle, though, having recorded four wins in a row to go seven matches undefeated – two records they hope will be intact come 4.45pm.

Manager’s Thoughts

Jim Duffy told “We look at the game now and it’s different from the last time down there. They’ve a different manager, and although Gary was there when they played at Cappielow, since then there’s been different players in.

“He’s brought in [Dom] Thomas, [Joe] Thomson, and John Rankin, guys like that. He’s changed round four or five players at least so it’s almost like a different team, and they play in different way now, a slightly different shape.

“It will be like playing a different team in essence because they’ve changed so much over the last six weeks or so. Last week, they lost 1-0 to Hibs, but other than that, they’ve been on a decent run of form since we last played them.

“We have four away games on the bounce – we were away to Ayr, we’re away to Queen of the South then away to Raith and Rangers – so it’s a really, really difficult period for us.

“We got a fantastic result at Ayr last week and that keeps the confidence high, so when we got down to Queen of the South, even though we know they’ve improved, we’re going down with the belief we can get the result.

“But we also know that if we don’t do the things we have been doing, if we’re not up for it and we don’t work as hard as the opposition then we’ll come back up the road with nothing.”

Team News

Besides long-term absentees Conor Pepper, Jai Quitongo and Kudus Oyenuga, manager Jim Duffy expects to have a clean bill of health tomorrow, with defender Ricki Lamie having recovered from the knee knock suffered last Saturday.

Midfielder Jamie Lindsay is also available for selection again after sitting out the 4-1 win at Ayr United due to a one-match suspension.

Current Connections

Cappielow stars Gary Oliver and Andy Murdoch both started against Morton in Queen of the South colours last season, with midfielder Murdoch playing in the final meeting of the campaign here in Greenock back in March.

Forward Oliver found the net for the Doonhamers in that particular clash but found himself on the losing side after the Ton ran out 3-2 winners and also featured in two other meetings between the sides last term.

Amongst the Queens ranks are former Ton keeper Lee Robinson, who spent the 2007/08 season on loan from Rangers, and ex-striker Derek Lyle, who scored five goals in 17 starts and four sub appearances in 2010/11.

Recent Meetings

Sat 14 Nov 2016: Morton 2-0 Queen of the South (Ladbrokes Championship)

Tue 15 Mar 2016: Morton 3-2 Queen of the South (Ladbrokes Championship)

Sat 15 Oct 2016: Queen of the South 0-5 Morton (Ladbrokes Championship)

Sat 24 Dec 2016: Morton 1-0 Queen of the South (Ladbrokes Championship)

Last Time Out

Morton gave their supporters the gift of three points as an early Christmas present with a 1-0 win over Queen of the South at Cappielow.

On a wet and windy December 24, in a match that kicked off at 1pm, Jim Duffy’s side showed grit and determination to grind out the victory thanks to Thomas O’Ware’s first-half header.

The hard-earned triumph saw the Ton move back ahead of Falkirk into third place and stretch their unbeaten home run to a fantastic 14 matches.


Referee: Bobby Madden

Assistant one: David McGeachie

Assistant two: Richard Murray

Supporters Notes

Entry is by ticket and these can be purchased from the ticket office next to the stand and admission prices are:

Adult – £16
Concession – £9
Child under 16 – £5

Image: David Bell