Neilston were able to shrug off a resilient Port Glasgow side, which was marred by Farmer’s Boys striker Paul Stewart being ‘headbutted’ at the Brig O’Lea Stadium on Saturday.

The hosts should have scored before half-time, but a man of the match performance from Craig Beaton in goals for the Undertakers.

Co-manager Martin Campbell said: “Port Glasgow make it tough for everyone they play, and we said to them before the game if you can match the battle then we’re confident our football would take over and that proved the case

“It should have been four or five-nil by half-time, it was a mixture of us missing clearcut chances and their goalkeeper having a great game.

“A mixture of him having a great game and us not being clinical was the difference at half-time.”

But a second-half hat-trick from Dylan Fletcher, fresh from signing a new deal before kick-off, helped seal the three points.

Two minutes after the break a deep free-kick played into the penalty area found the striker free, and he took advantage tapping home his first.

Just five minutes later he was able to tap his second home.

But after the hour mark Port Glasgow were given a lifeline, Danny Bamford slotting home a penalty after Darren Boyle was tripped in the box.

But Fletcher bagged his hat-trick towards the end of the game to make it 3-1.

Campbell added: “Once we got our goal that was us, and credit to Dylan he scored early in the second half and hew went on to get a hat-trick.

We got a wee fright when they got a penalty to make it 2-1 which let them back into the game but we scored quite quickly after that to settle ourselves back down again.”

The club almost announced the signing of Kilbirnie Ladeside, Vale of Leven, Renfrew and Johnstone Burgh striker Scott Arthur this week.

And Campbell is hoping the forward can make an impact for the Farmer Boy’s for the remainder of the season.

He added: “He’s somebody we’ve known over the years.

“He’s only 25 but he’s one of those ones you think has been around for years and years and he’s got a decent wee bit of experience behind him now and we know the ability he’s got and he’s great at holding the ball up and he’s got an eye for goal.

“If you look back at any of the stats for the teams he’s played for he’s always scored the goals.

“He maybe just lacks a wee bit of fitness, match sharpness but we’ll try and get him up to speed and I’m sure he’ll give us a right good return in the run-in towards the end of the season.”

Neilston also played Clydebank in a friendly on Monday night, with their depleted squad losing 6-2.

The bus will leave Brig O’Lea at 12 for their trip to Benburb on Saturday, with a kick-off time at 2pm.