Livingston manager John McGlynn praised the impact of match-winner Myles Hippolyte whose strike in extra-time sealed the Lions’ passage into the third round of the League Cup at the expense of Queen of the South last night.
The 19-year-old substitute showed terrific composure in the 119th minute to convert player/assistant manager Mark Burchill’s pass into the far corner for the only goal of the game at a cold Energy Assets Arena.
Hippolyte, a summer signing after his release from English Championship outfit Brentford, put his disappointment aside at being relegated to the subs’ bench after making his first competitive start in last Saturday’s 1-1 draw down in Dumfries to fire his side to victory.
“He’s (Myles) hit it very well,” McGlynn said about the teenager’s contribution. “He’s an exciting talent as he’s got an abundance of skill but he’s just got to learn the other aspects of the game which we are working on. He came on against Hearts last week and lit the place up, started the game down in Dumfries last Saturday but wasn’t quite the same as we had to make tactical changes at half-time. But he’s got that energy to make an impact and he certainly did that.”
Last night’s cup tie was the third occasion the two clubs had met this season, Livi yet to taste defeat against their Championship rivals – a statistic McGlynn believes his players can take huge confidence from.
“The form book suggested this was going to go all the way and it did,” he said. “The two teams are evenly matched with not a lot separating them barring that last-minute goal. I’ve got to give credit to our players as they worked extremely hard, kept on going and got their rewards right at the death which is what you’ve got to do.
“Our fitness levels are very good and we’re delighted about that. We’re in the next round and it keeps our run going.”
The first half was a low-key affair with home goalkeeper Darren Jamieson a virtual spectator as both Jordan White and Burton O’Brien went close at the other end.
Keaghan Jacobs tested Alexander Clark with a powerful shot from the edge of the area after the intervalas the home side continued to look the more likely to break the deadlock.
But, Livi’s outfield players had Jamieson to thank as he produced a terrific save to deny former Lions man Iain Russell in the second half of extra-time when bearing down on goal.
However, after a terrific run into Queen’s penalty box, Jacobs cleverly picked out Burchill, who in turn fed Hippolyte, and the Englishman duly delivered with a well-struck effort from eight yards into the net.
Livingston: Jamieson, Talbot, Fordyce, Kyle Jacobs (Sives 62), Keaghan Jacobs, O’Brien, Mullen (Hippolyte 71), Gallagher, McKenna, White, Glen (Burchill 106). Subs: Grant, Robertson, Beaumont, Rutherford.
Queen of the South: Clark, Dowie, Durnan, Higgins, Holt, Fowler, McShane (Lyle 34), Russell, Kidd (D Smith 97), Baird (Carmichael 76), Dzierzawski. Subs: Atkinson, Slattery, Hooper, A Smith.
Referee: George Salmond.