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St. Mirren 1 v 2 Clyde

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: St. Mirren Park
Date: Saturday, 8th March 2003
Kick Off: 3:00pm
Attendance: 2,683
St. Mirren
v
Clyde

Hide Match Report

by Alan Henderson

LINE-UP

Halliwell

Potter Kernaghan Mensing

Bossy Hagen

Millen Fraser
Cosgrove

Shields Falconer

SUBS: McLaughlin, Morrison, Kane (Fraser 75), Keogh (Shields 73), Gilhaney (Hagen 57).

REPORT

Clyde's expected response from Tuesday night's disappointment took 80 minutes to happen, but when it did it made the day worthwhile. Both teams struggled to produce any flowing football and the game looked set for a goalless draw until young Gilhaney was given his debut. He was instrumental in the first goal and capped his debut with a coolly taken goal himself. Typically Clyde then lost the plot in the last few minutes and did well to escape Paisley with a win.

Mensing returned to his usual spot on the left and Bossy was employed as a right wingback (or was he?). It's not clear if Clyde were 3-5-2 or 4-4-2. If Bossy was a wingback then he was certainly more back than wing and hardly got forward for most of the game. St Mirren opened brightly as once again the Clyde midfield struggled to get up to speed. Halliwell produced a couple of fine saves as Clyde simply couldn't string any passes together. Only a turn and shot from Shileds gave any cause for optimism as St Mirren looked far sharper. It took Clyde about 30 minutes to have a shot on target when Hagen fired the ball straight at the keeper from just inside the box. Otherwise both teams showed an amazing ability to go forward towards the last third and then pass the ball back.

With no changes at half time it gave little hope things would improve and that was to be the case for a while. St Mirren did go on the offensive straight away and Halliwell produced another fine save. The game looked goalless until Gilhaney came on to replace the struggling Hagen with 15 minutes to go. Clyde then seemed to look stronger and Cosgrove twice drove the ball into the side netting. Keogh replaced Shields as Clyde sensed the game was there for the taking. Kane was also introduced for Fraser. With about 10 minutes to go Gilhaney was checked on the right. Kane produced his typical flat and fast delivery and Kernaghan flashed a header into the net from around the penalty spot. St Mirren were stunned and soon lost another goal. Distracted by Keogh and Falconer coming back from offside positions, Gilhaney ran through alone and coolly slotted the ball under the keeper. The game looked dead and buried but this was not to be. St Mirren quickly won a penalty and Gillies smacked the ball off the post and away to safety. Clyde still couldn't settle and lost a goal. Panic and poor marking left Roberts to convert an easy chance. Well into injury time Clyde were hanging on and Halliwell produced a great save to divert a volley that looked as if it was heading towards the top corner. Thankfully that was the last act of the game.

In the end it was a win but for 80 minutes the game was very poor and not what the fans expected after the defeat at Falkirk. Still the team must be commended for grinding out another win and hopefully Gilhaney's career will take off from here.

STAR RATINGS (*****)

Halliwell ***** On this form he must be attracting interest from big clubs.
Potter ** Still struggling to find his dominant form.
Mensing ** Clearly lacking confidence at the moment.
Kernaghan *** Steady enough and a fine goal to cap his day.
Fraser ** Poor game and maybe lacking match sharpness.
Bossy *** Coped well enough on the right.
Hagen ** Failed to make an impact.
Millen *** Usual energy to keep things going.
Falconer *** Proved an able target for most of the game.
Cosgrove *** Good spell on the left but looks a bit lightweight.
Shields ** Little service for the forward to work from.
Gilhaney *** Youthful enthusiasm at last.
Keogh ** Little time to make an impact.
Kane ** Good delivery from the free kick for the goal.

REACTION

John Coughlin - "I think we should have taken something from the game, and I don't think Clyde were any better than us by any manner of means. There wasn't much in it but we've shot ourselves in the foot again."

Alan Kernaghan - "It's a vital three points for us. The first half wasn't great; we were under the cosh all the time. I thought St.Mirren played very well and gave us a lot of problems, and were probably unfortunate not to go in ahead at half-time. But in the second half we changed things a little bit and once we got the goals we looked comfortable, until a crazy five minutes at the end put us under pressure. We should have learned out lesson after getting away with the penalty, but it was just poor defending."

"For the goal, I was about to go in and then Paddy came from behind me and went into the space I was going to go into, so I ended up standing still and the ball came straight to me. If I had moved I would have been 4 or 5 yards away from it. But I was delighted to score."

"We've been desperate to get Mark Gilhaney into the team for about two months, but Steve Convery's injury prompted him to go in today. He's got plenty of pace and if he starts running at you he can give you big problems. He took his goal excellently, and we're just trying to encourage him to be as positive as he can. He played Wednesday and Thursday for the under-18s, so we were wary of using him for a long time, but you could see the difference he made to the game."

"Mark McLaughlin was feeling a bit tired at the end of the week so we decided to rest him. We definitely don't want to rush him back too quickly as he's been out for a long time."

"I've enjoyed my first season as Clyde manager. Results have been good which helps, and the players have been fantastic. They've rallied round me and themselves, and it's been a big team effort. The next 10 games require that more than ever though."

Mark Gilhaney - "I was delighted to get my chance, and it couldn't have worked out better. I really enjoyed it and scoring the goal was a great feeling. Everyone seems to have faith in me, so I'm hoping to repay them on the park."