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Tuesday 3rd November 2015

SPFL Team of the Week

Craig Fowler selects his SPFL Team of the Week, with Hibernian midfielder John McGinn the star man after an outstanding performance against Rangers.

Craig Fowler selects his SPFL Team of the Week, with Hibernian midfielder John McGinn the star man after an outstanding performance against Rangers.

GK - Alan Mannus (St Johnstone)
Saints may have gone on to win comfortably at Hamilton - establishing a 4-0 lead before being pegged back to 4-2 - but they wouldn't have been able to push themselves into such a commanding position were it not for a couple of first-class saves from Alan Mannus at 0-0. The Northern Irish keeper used his feet to block a Christian Nade effort, before tipping a shot from the same player round the post.

DR - Josh Law (Motherwell)
The Motherwell utility man makes it into the side for the second week in succession. He certainly appears to be benefiting from the arrival of Mark McGhee. After a strong outing against Aberdeen, he was solid as a rock once more in Motherwell's 1-0 victory at Rugby Park. Greg Kiltie is one of the country's finest young attacking players, but he was kept in check by Law throughout.

DC - Ryan McGowan (Dundee United)
Clean sheets have been just as rare as wins at Tannadice this season, but Dundee United breathed life into their 2015/16 campaign by securing both against Ross County on Saturday. Marshalling the back four was McGowan. The Australian kept the unit organised throughout and made some key individual challenges to help fight off pressure from County.

DC - Michael Dunlop (Albion Rovers)
Third-placed Albion Rovers showed that they belong at the top end of the table with a hard-fought 1-1 draw at Airdrieonians, the team directly below them in Ladbrokes League 1. Rovers kept the three-point gap between the sides thanks in part to a stellar defensive showing, with Dunlop the top performer.

DL - Kieran Tierney (Celtic)
Celtic fans could not be more enthused with their teenage prodigy, who has been terrific any time he has featured this season. Against Aberdeen - the closest challengers to Celtic going into the weekend's action - he showed his capabilities aren't just for games against teams at the wrong end of the division. He looked confident and more than worthy of a place on the park, and his cross for Leigh Griffiths to grab the opening goal was simply sublime.

MC - Arnaud Djoum (Hearts)
Having perhaps lacked a central midfielder who gets beyond the strikers, it appears Hearts have got their man in the form of the Belgian who is, at this moment in time, signed only until January. Djoum can not only wreak havoc in the opposing penalty area, which he did to great effect at Firhill in winning a spot-kick, he can also graft further back and help Robbie Neilson's side keep their solid base.

MC - John McGinn (Hibernian)
Hibernian got a stunning performance from their diminutive midfielder when they needed it most. What McGinn lacks in stature, he makes up for in heart and skill. Against Rangers he showed his terrific vision, refusing to concede possession to the visitors. While on the other side of the ball he chased, harried and worked himself into the ground, never giving the league leaders a second to think on the Easter Road turf. Alan Stubbs called him ‘outstanding’. It's difficult to argue. This week's star man.

FR - Rory McAllister (Peterhead)
The only member of this team to feature on a losing side, though that could hardly be considered McAllister's fault. He netted a hat-trick within 38 minutes against Stenhousemuir, taking his tally this campaign to an astounding 17 goals in 16 appearances. That built up a 3-0 lead which Peterhead could not hold on to, eventually going down 4-3 in a tremendous match at Ochilview.

FC - Jordan White (Livingston)
Livingston's bad start to the season is now in the past after their second impressive victory in a row lifted them up to seventh place. On this occasion it was Raith Rovers on the end of a humbling, with Jordan White proving too much of a problem for the visitors to deal with. The striker headed in Livingston's opener before securing the 3-0 win with a close-range finish in the second half.

FC - Jason Scotland (Stenhousemuir)
Welcome back, Jason. Scottish football sure did miss you. The former Hamilton Accies and Dundee United striker made his first start for new club Stenhousemuir and played a pivotal role as they made an outrageous comeback to win 4-3 against Peterhead. At both goals, Scotland showcased his trademark quick feet to side-step defenders before lashing the ball into the net. His second, in particular, was a strike of high quality and levelled the scores at 3-3.

FL - Leigh Griffiths (Celtic)
Griffiths seems to have taken the criticism of manager Ronny Deila personally and is now on a mission to relieve his boss of any pressure after two match-winning performances in a week against the two strongest Scottish challengers to the Parkhead side. In a finely-poised match against Aberdeen, he proved to be the difference maker in the first half, superbly rising between two mammoth defenders in Paul Quinn and Ash Taylor to power a header into the corner.