Oliver’s twist – striker explains 2nd half resurgence

Morton matchwinner Gary Oliver says it wasn’t just a sense of injustice that spurred the side on to victory against Ayr United but a half-time boot up the backside by boss Jim Duffy.

The Ton went in at the break trailing to a Kevin Nisbet strike eight minutes before the interval to leave the Cappielow gaffer fuming after an uninspired first-half.

It seemed as though the hosts were fired up for a spirited second-half comeback after referee Mat Northcroft disallowed what they felt was a perfectly legitimate Aidan Nesbitt leveller.

But, according to Oliver, Duffy’s half-time dressing down also helped inspire the Ton troops to score twice towards the end to bag three priceless home points.

Speaking exclusively to gmfc.net, the 21-year-old said: “The second half was definitely an improvement. The gaffer gave us a bit of rollicking at half-time.

“We had quite a sloppy start to the game to be fair. We had been starting quite well in games, but today we were sluggish and they are a hard team to play against: big, strong, and physical.

“But the gaffer gave us a jag at half-time and we came out in the second half and performed a lot better as a team. We were brilliant, on top the full second half and deserved to win the game.

“Aidan also scored a great goal that was disallowed and it spurred us on a lot, because we thought it was a goal – so it helped us in a way.

“Personally, I don’t think it should have been disallowed at all. We were all wondering why at first because we were away celebrating, thinking we had scored an equaliser. But these things happen I suppose.”

Shhhhh … Oliver silences the vocal travelling support after scoring last-minute winner © David Bell

The Ton refused to feel sorry for themselves and redoubled their efforts, scoring twice in the final 17 minutes through Thomas O’Ware and Oliver, whose 89th-minute winner was his fourth of the campaign.

He added: “At the end of the day we won the match and I’ve scored a last-minute winner. I don’t get them often, so I’ll take it

“When I ran through on goal the only thing going through my mind was to score. I had a wee look across to [Jai Quitongo] but I thought the defender was cutting that pass off.

“I saw the goalie coming out and tried to put it through his legs. It was quite a hard angle, but lucky enough it got through and I got a wee tap-in. It’s a relief when it breaks back to you and the goalie’s behind you.

“I don’t get goals like that often, I think all my goals this season have come from outside the box, so I was due a wee bit of luck like that and sometimes these wee goals are the best ones.”

The victory took the Sinclair Street side’s run of form to five wins in their last seven matches, and Oliver hopes they can maintain that momentum in tomorrow night’s derby against St Mirren.

He concluded: “We’re in a good wee patch just now but we need to keep it going. We’ve got a massive game against St Mirren next and I don’t think we’ve beaten them in 17 years, so it would be bonus to get the three points and end that.”


Images: David Bell