BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport
St Mirren boss Alex Rae has declared Lawrence Shankland’s magnificent volley against Livingston his goal of the season after the on loan striker’s brilliant brace inspired the Buddies to a 3-2 win.
Poised on the edge of the box, Shankland flicked a Keith Watson pass into the air and showed remarkable technique and awareness to unleash a drive beyond the helpless Marc McCallum to secure a pivotal three points.
Shankland’s first of the afternoon wasn’t bad either, with the former Queen’s Park man unleashing a dipping drive past McCallum from 20 yards.
That deadly double added to an early Stevie Mallan penalty kick, awarded for a foul on Calum Gallagher by Darren Cole, and rendered goals from Livi strike duo Liam Buchanan and Jordan White moot.
“An absolutely stunning goal has won us the game,” lauded a delighted Rae. “I thought it was as good a finish as I’ve seen all season.
“The way he has taken it onto his chest and volleyed it in is brilliant. To win the game in that manner is magnificent. His first goal was top drawer as well.
“He does things like that in training and it was absolutely fantastic to see him do it in a game. He’s a handful, he keeps plugging away and we are grateful to have him here – we’re grateful to Aberdeen for that.”
And Rae was in no mood to underplay the scale of the victory, describing yesterday’s contest at the Tony Macaroni Arena as his most important match in charge of the club.
St Mirren are now 10 points above the relegation zone and, after a tumultuous season in Paisley, look to save secured their Championship status for next term.
“That was the most important game of my time at St Mirren,” he continued. “It was massive and it really gives us something to build on. Until it’s mathematical I can’t say we are safe, but that’s 10 points now and we are on a decent wee run now.”