St Mirren manager Jim Goodwin expressed his relief and delight after his team fought back to claim a 2-1 comeback win over Inverness to book their place in the Scottish Cup quarter-finals.
Marcus Fraser’s goal in the 89th minute settled a compelling tie, with Saints now awaiting the winners of Saturday’s game between Kilmarnock and Montrose.
Nikolay Todorov had put the Championship outfit in front, while Kristian Dennis drew the home team level shortly afterwards after 50 minutes before Fraser’s late winner sent them through.
Goodwin said: “We definitely left it late, there’s no doubt about that. We hit the woodwork a couple of times as well.
“It could have been a game that finished 5-4 in the end – but I’m delighted that we’re on the right side of the result.
“We didn’t underestimate Inverness. We showed them the utmost respect. They’re a good side and I’ve watched them a few times.
“And I thought they were excellent on the night. But it’s another quarter-final to look forward to. We want to be consistently going far in cup competitions and we’re doing that now.
“We’ve given ourselves a great chance of getting back to Hampden which is the most important thing. If we go all the way nobody will care too much about this performance.”
Inverness caretaker boss Neil McCann felt his players had at least deserved to take the tie to extra-time.
He said: “I don’t think we deserved to lose the game. St Mirren may possibly argue that they deserved to shade it – I would argue the other way.
“I think, if anything, if it was going into extra-time, we were looking strong. I felt we were actually looking a wee bit fitter. We would have been confident going into extra-time.
“Football does that to you. We maybe just switched off ever so slightly. Their good players got into areas where they could hurt us.
“Marcus Fraser comes from right-back, so it’s a gamble on his behalf, and that’s credit to him.
“It’s a sore one, but I’m so proud of them and I think everybody in Inverness who watched will be proud of their side.
“That’s the second Premiership team we’ve matched. We really deserved to win at Ross County – away from home – and I’d still argue we deserved to go through tonight.
“We will go up the road disappointed but really encouraged by that performance.”