Livingston’s recent impressive away form continued with a very comfortable victory over bottom side Queen of the South. The win, which guaranteed the Lions’ place in the 1st division, came courtesy of another Rory Boulding double and goals from Marc McNulty and Keaghan Jacobs.
Queens opened the brighter of the two teams, but failed to really threaten Andy McNeil in the Livi goals, with Sam Parkin having an effort deflected wide for a corner. It was Livingston that were to get the best chance to score more than quarter of an hour into the game. Marc McNulty was clean through on goal, with Chris Higgins hot in pursuit, but his shot went agonisingly wide of the post.
Three minutes later, from a Queen of the South corner, Livingston shot up the pitch with a quick counter attack, Dean Cummings was through on goal, but Lee Robinson smothered the ball at the young midfielders feet before he was able to take a shot.
Minutes later, Livingston again powered up the park from a Queens attack, Marc McNulty slid the ball to Bobby Barr who only just put the ball wide.
A few minutes later, a Keaghan Jacobs free kick found the head of Rory Boulding, but Robinson was equal to the header, just tipping the ball over. The small travelling support didn’t have to wait long, as Rory Boulding connected with a perfect Bobby Barr corner to header into the top corner of the net.
Kyle Jacobs came to the rescue of the Livi defence after a Craig Barr mistake put Kevin Smith through on goal, but Kyle Jacobs slid in to take the ball off the feet of the Queens attacker.
Queen of the South’s chances were all but ended as Higgins put in a high challenge to the back of Marc McNulty, who was evidently dazed by the challenge. The referee had no choice but to show the central defender a straight red.
Livingston doubled their lead moments later, Kevin McCann sent in a powerful cross which Robinson connected with, but could only clear as far as McNulty a blasted the ball into the back of the net.
This led to a tactical change by Queen of the South’s Gus McPherson, taking off striker Smith for defender John Potter, as the home side attempted to stem the flow of a very confident Livingston performance.
Bobby Barr had the last significant effort of the first half, sending an 18 yard shot low past the post.
Livingston continued their attacking performance in the second half, with Boulding having a shot saved by Robinson just 6 minutes in. Queens attempted to pull a goal back, but Nicky Clark’s effort was high and wide.
Livingston had the ball in the back of the net just 11 minutes into the second half, young defender Calum Fordyce sent in a rare shot which Robinson fumbled to the feet of Boulding, but the resultant goal was ruled offside by the linesman.
Livingston’s confidence continued, with Craig Barr heading over a Keaghan Jacobs free kick. This was followed up by a volleyed effort by substitute by Connor McDonald from a Cummings cross, but his effort went wide.
Livi eventually did add to their lead through the boot of Keaghan Jacobs, Boulding and McNulty combined on the wing with the latter passing the ball straight to Keaghan who easily blasted the ball past Robinson.
The game slowed in tempo, with little to note other than a poor shot by Calum Fordyce going wide.
However, with just 3 minutes to go, Rory Boulding latched on to a poor defensive mistake and duly put the ball past Robinson, scoring his 10th goal in the last 6 games.
The game was extremely one sided, with McNeil having no saves of note during the game. The Queen of the South fans will have been disappointed with the lack of fight from the bottom placed team. However, the young Livingston team played extremely well, professionally and efficiently winning the game by a very comfortable scoreline.
Queen of the South:
Robinson, Reid, McGuffie, Higgins, Holt, Johnston, McLaughlin (Reilly 64), Clark (McKenna 76), Carmichael,
Parkin, Smith (Potter 39)
Subs not used: Atkinson, Brighton
McNeil, McCann, Fordyce, Watson, C.Barr, Ky.Jacobs, B.Barr (McDonald 57), Boulding, McNulty (A.Russell 83), Cummings (L.Gray 74), Kn.Jacobs
Subs not used: Sinclair, Murphy
Ref: A Muir
Match report by Chris Naismith