Millennium Champions: Double Barry shotgun
By Stuart Gillespie
Updated Friday, 18th September 2009
The Renfrewshire derby may not be that famous in Scotland, let alone further afield, but it is arguably one of the country's top matches between local sides - and it's always good when you win it.Morton had held the bragging rights for a few months after hammering us 5-1 at Love Street on April 10 (I only remember as it was my birthday!) so it was time for a bit of payback. They also deserved a doing for being soapdodgers and having a luminous yellow kit, well before the likes of Barcelona made them cool.
Despite that, the officials decided to give them a helping hand. The referee was the same one from that day at Stirling when Shuggy Murray scored that goal, and he continued with his "look at me" approach early in the game. With the ball bouncing around in the Saints penalty area, the referee suddenly noticed his linesman flagging for some reason or other. Having consulted with him, he wandered over, grabbed the ball from one of our players and put it on the penalty spot. Whatever happened to, ooh I don't know, blowing your whistle? Paddy Connolly, once he'd stopped laughing, fired it home to give the soapless and hopeless the lead.
However, midway through the half they were shot down - not for the first or last time - by Mark Yardley. The big man loved playing against the smelly ones and after latching onto a long ball he beat one of the Morton defenders before slamming home the equaliser.
The scores weren't level for long, however, as Barry Lavety - another larger than life striker who enjoyed getting it up that mob from down the road - headed home the second, despite the efforts of a smelly defender to tip the shot around the post.
The lead should have been greater as we stamped our authority all over our local rivals and another Saints fan got the third just before the hour mark, Barry McLaughlin scoring with a header from another corner (note to younger Saints fans: we really did score from corners in those days).
With a drubbing looking likely, the officials twice decided to help out those less fortunate than themselves. First, Morton were given another penalty - this time for a blatant hand ball by Tommy Turner - and Connolly scored once again. Then Basher was given his marching orders for a clash with Paul Fenwick, probably for trying to lamp the traitor!
Despite all the help, our chums from down the road couldn't get the equaliser and the glorious Buddies kept their place at the top of the pile. How long could it last? Up next was a game against a proper team - Falkirk.