Rival managers Jim Goodwin and Tommy Wright agreed a draw was the right result after a hard-fought contest between St Johnstone and St Mirren in Perth.
The Buddies had the edge in possession but the home side squandered the best opportunity to break the deadlock when Michael O’Halloran was denied by goalkeeper Vaclav Hladky in the first half.
And St Johnstone boss Wright suspected it would have been very different if O’Halloran had taken his chance.
“I thought a draw was probably a fair result but we had the two best chances in the game,” he said. “We should have taken at least one and if we had then it would have been different.
“It was a difficult game. St Mirren worked hard and made it tough for us.
“We didn’t do enough. Too many players dwelt on the ball and were not as positive as they should have been.”
It was a third clean sheet in succession for Wright’s men, while St Mirren go into a Boxing Day clash with Celtic boosted by a three-game run without defeat.
“Once again we defended well, though, and that’s a positive,” said Wright. “A win today would have put either team four points off Hibs, so the disappointing thing is we didn’t capitalise on the chances we created.”
Buddies manager Goodwin was pleased to take a point on the road, with Celtic and Kilmarnock looming before the winter break.
“A point away from home is always a good result and this is a difficult place to come to,” he said. “We prepared well for a battle. We knew it wouldn’t be pretty and the pitch was heavy.
“We had to roll our sleeves up and get stuck in, so I was delighted with that.
“We ran ourselves into the ground and that battling quality will be vital for the rest of the season.
“In terms of the balance of the game I felt we were better, but on clear-cut chances St Johnstone had the better ones.
“A point and a clean sheet on the road is positive and I think we are in a good place at the moment.
“Hopefully we can carry that into the last two games before the winter break.
“I’d love to get a win going into the second half of the season – hopefully we can catch Celtic on the hop.”
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