Dunfermline manager Jim McIntyre faces a familiar challenge of lifting his team after more individual errors again undermined their relegation fight.
The Pars, who sit joint bottom of the SPL alongside Hibs, were marginally more dangerous for the first half hour of their 3-0 home defeat to St Johnstone. But they again lost a soft opening goal as goalkeeper Chris Smith inadvertently punched Liam Craig’s corner into his own net in the 36th minute.
McIntyre has consistently bemoaned his players’ slack defending and Smith – making his first start of the season in place of the injured Paul Gallacher – compounded his error by spilling a routine Marcus Haber shot to allow Francisco Sandaza to double St Johnstone’s lead in the 53rd minute before Craig finished efficiently in the 59th minute. McIntyre will now have to work hard to rejuvenate his team before their clash with Motherwell at Fir Park on Wednesday.
McIntyre said: “We make the mistake for the first goal again and it knocks the stuffing out of us for ten minutes. We started the second half well and again it’s another mistake. It’s really difficult to recover when you keep doing the same things.”