Malky Mackay makes case for Dingwall defence as St Mirren win moves Ross County into top six

Ross County manager Malky Mackay credited his defence for their 1-0 victory over St Mirren.

Ross County manager Malky Mackay with Joseph Hungbo against St. Mirren.  (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)
Ross County manager Malky Mackay with Joseph Hungbo against St. Mirren. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)

Joe Hungbo's penalty early in the second half proved to be the difference between the teams but that was not for a lack of trying by the visitors in Dingwall.

The result was the second 1-0 win for County in a row, and a third consecutive victory that saw them move into the top half of the table.

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While it is their attacking players that have claimed the plaudits in recent months, Mackay made sure to praise his backline for their mental and physical resilience.

"I'm delighted to get the clean sheet again, the back four were outstanding today," Mackay said. "Teams have really thrown everything at us in the closing 15-20 minutes and it’s great credit to the centre-backs and full-backs that they stayed nice and calm and kept playing in a manner where we are reasonably high up the pitch.

"That allows us the chance to go and counter-attack. Both wingers worked hard and carried the ball 50 yards on separate occasions, getting bums off the seats.

"That's down to their willingness and fitness to do that - and that's what this group has got having got back at 2am after Wednesday's game.

"It's great credit to our staff helping the players recover and prepare, so we were absolutely ready to rumble at 3pm today."

Motherwell boss Stephen Robinson had no complaints over the penalty decision, admitting his team did not do enough to claim three points.

"I've seen it back, and I can see why he has given that," Robinson admitted.

"Does he dangle his leg? I'm not so sure. The referee is a lot closer than I was for the decision.

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"We can talk about the penalties that weren't given at Hearts and red cards but we can't feel sorry for ourselves. We've got to get on with it.

"There will be a lot better performances from us than that. I've got a group of boys that are giving everything, it just didn't happen for us and it hasn't happened in the last week.

"We've only had three training sessions, one indoors when the snow was here. It is very difficult to put any stamp on it at the moment but over time I'll change that."

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