A FURIOUS Jim Duffy let loose on his players, branding their performance against St Mirren ‘terrible’ following a 4-1 loss at Cappielow in the Renfrewshire derby.

Duffy watched as his side slipped to a dismal defeat in front of an expectant fan base and admitted they were outplayed by St Mirren in every aspect of the game.

He said: “I thought we were terrible from start to finish, I don’t think we turned up.

"Although we were 1-1 at half-time I think that flattered us, I was delighted at 1-1 because I’m thinking ‘we haven’t played and we’re 1-1’.

“You’re hoping to go out in the second half and get a response but it’s went completely the opposite. They’ve scored a gift of a goal within a minute, it was a terrific finish from Mallan who is a terrific young player. 

“But it’s been a freakish goal because the boy has tried to take a long throw and he’s mis-thrown it and that gave them space because we’ve went in to defend a long throw.

“Then we give the ball away and it’s a misunderstanding with two players in the middle of the pitch, they’ve capitalised and the game is then gone. St Mirren deserved their victory and I’ve got absolutely no complaints.

“That’s as poor as I can remember us playing for a long time, as a whole, as a unit. Normally we’re organised and hard to break down but every department from the organisational to the creative was missing tonight and St Mirren fully capitalised.”

The result, and performance, is an outcome that has been few and far between this season for the Greenock outfit, who have been in the top four for the majority of the campaign.

And it was one that Duffy wasn’t expecting.

The boss believes Ton will have to shape up if they are to remain in the play-off places — and try to rediscover the edge that has alluded them in the past few clashes.

He said: “It’s totally uncharacteristic of our season, I didn’t see it coming. We looked sharp and lively leading up to the game.

"We had a terrific response at the weekend against Hibs and you’re thinking we’re up for the challenge, but we weren’t at the races.

“It’s painful to say, particularly for our supporters, but St Mirren were better in every area of the pitch.

“We’re not in the play-offs yet. And any lesson is only a lesson if you learn from it, it’s just painful tonight. I’m not even thinking about it being a kick up the backside or not, I don’t think we should need that.

“We’ve worked so hard this season to get ourselves into the top four and been there for a long time now. But we’ve done it with desire, organisation and those types of qualities, allied with a level of ability.

“But tonight all those elements were missing.”