Livingston 1 - Peterhead 0
ROBBIE WINTERS reckons teams are setting out their stall to defend and frustrate when they come to West Lothian.
Peterhead were the most recent visitors to the Braidwood Motor Company Stadium where only a close-range header from Winters separated the sides.
And the veteran striker believes trying to stifle Livi on their own patch is a tactic a host of sides have been using this season.
He said: “Every game in this league is different and I think Peterhead came to frustrate us a little bit. They were wasting time a bit here and there which was frustrating but you saw them pick up the pace after we scored.
“You want teams to come here and play against us and go for the win but teams are going to come here and be a bit defensive which is a bit frustrating at home.
“But as long as we can pass the ball quickly and take two or three touches each we can break teams down.
“Everybody says we are the favourites for the league so everyone wants to beat us but all we can do is keep trying to win games.
“The first half was a bit frustrating and scrappy and we also changed formation half-way through. Hopefully, we can get the ball down and play it as Livingston are a side who want to play good football in this division.”
Conor Gethins had the first chance of the match after skipping clear down the right but the Peterhead frontman dragged the ball across the face of goal and wide.
At the other end Craig Barr headed narrowly wide twice in quick succession both times from Aaron Conway corners but it was the visitors who were creating the better chances in open play.
David Ross curled over the top from the edge of the box while Stuart Anderson had an acrobatic hook volley tipped over the bar by Tony Bullock.
Jon Bateman was also called into action between the Blue Toon sticks before the break to beat away a long range Conway drive.
After the break Chris Malone was denied by Bateman with a low drive from the left hand side of the box but Livingston did make the breakthrough just after the hour mark.
A David Sinclair corner was met by Michael O’Byrne and his knockdown into the danger area was headed home by the lurking Winters.
Winters could have had a second before the end after Bateman sclaffed a clearance straight to the striker 25-yards out but the Livi man snatched at his effort which flew wide.
Livingston manager Gary Bollan said: “Happy enough with the three points but a bit disappointed with the performance. We’ve managed to win a few games this year without playing well and the players deserve credit for that.
“We knew it was going to be a tight game as when we played them up at Balmoor they caused us problems so we expected the same again.
“I felt we had to make a change to try and get a goal and when we had three strikers like Robbie Winters, Iain Russell and Rafa De Vita all on the pitch you’ve always got a chance.”
Peterhead boss Neale Cooper said: “We had two or three chances but when you come away from home you’ve got to make their keeper make a save.
“We needed better in the middle of the park. I said it in the changing room that we need better but we were a bit patched up today.
“This result means we’ve now got a big game next week against Ayr which we have to win.”
Courier Man of the Match: Chris Malone
Livingston: Bullock, C Barr, Watson, O’Byrne (MacDonald), Malone, Sinclair, Fox, Conway (De Vita), B Barr, Winters (Kyle Jacobs), Russell.