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Clyde 2 v 2 Alloa Athletic

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: Broadwood Stadium
Date: Tuesday, 11th March 2003
Kick Off: 7:30pm
Attendance: 665
Clyde
v
Alloa Athletic

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by Alan Henderson

LINE-UP

Halliwell

Potter Kernaghan Mensing

Bossy Hagen

Millen Kane
Cosgrove

Falconer Shields

SUBS: Keogh (Falconer 60), Morrison, Fraser (Kane 51), Gilhaney (Shields 51), Reid.

REPORT

The curse of Alloa returned to haunt Clyde and a late own goal by Mensing gave the Wasps a point and ended any slender hopes Clyde had of pressing Falkirk at the top. Effectively that's the end of the season as Falkirk won again at Dingwall.

Clyde started with Kane in midfield and Fraser relegated to the bench. Otherwise it was the same 11 that started on Saturday. On the bench were youngsters Gilhaney and Reid along with Keogh, Fraser and Morrison. Alloa Manager, Terry Christie, is a Headmaster and he does his homework. He must have looked at Potter, Mensing and Kernaghan and thought, 'they have no pace'. Alloa played Hamilton, Sloan and Little up front from the start and for the opening 15 minutes Clyde struggled to cope with their movement and pace. It came as no surprise when Alloa scored after 10 minutes. Pace took Alloa behind the Clyde defence and Sloan had a simple tap-in from a few yards out. This buoyed the confidence of Alloa and they began to give Clyde the run around with far sharper passing and movement . Fortunately when it came to creating clear chances they fell a little short. Clyde tried to respond with good attempts from Shields and Hagen but both went wide of the goal. The familiar pattern of playing against Alloa was starting to emerge. Alloa were happy to break down the Clyde attacks and then break at speed with numbers. We've all seen it many times before and as half time came there looked to be little hope for Clyde.

Surprisingly, given that Clyde were struggling, no changes were made at half time. However Assistant Manager Billy Reid only waited 5 minutes before he changed it (which begs the question: why not change things during the break?). Kane was replaced by Fraser and surprisingly Shields was taken off for Gilhaney. Falconer didn't last much longer before the hook came for him to be replaced by Keogh. The changes gave Clyde a bit more bite and sharpness but the game was starting to become ragged and stop-start which only played into Alloa's hands. Then with 15 minutes to go and Clyde looking as if they could play all night without scoring, Kernaghan came forward and advanced towards the box. He scooped the ball into the box and Keogh stabbed the ball past the stunned Alloa keeper. Keogh nearly made it 2 goals in a minute but his downward header was turned around the post by the keeper. Clyde didn't have to wait long to take the lead though. A corner was only cleared to Fraser at the edge of the box and his shot came back off the post for Gilhaney to react first and stroke the ball into the net. With only about 8 minutes remaining the game looked won but Alloa stuck back with only a few minutes to go. A long diagonal cross was being chased by several Alloa forwards and Mensing could only bundle the ball into his own net. There was still time for Alloa's Max Christie to be sent off again as he was in the previous meeting between the clubs.

So despite a good comeback to take the lead Clyde's defence again leaked a goal at the end and effectively ended any slender title aspirations. Oh well, there's always next year.

STAR RATINGS (*****)

Halliwell *** Little to do but could have been more positive to stop Alloa's equaliser.
Potter ** Drove on in the second half but some awful passing and crossing.
Mensing *** Passable game apart form the og.
Kernaghan ** Some poor passing spoiled his game.
Kane * Not at the pace of the game.
Bossy ** Poor passing and crossing also didn't look fit towards the end.
Hagen *** Kept trying but wayward shooting let him down.
Millen *** Ran all night as you would expect.
Falconer * Quiet game with little service.
Cosgrove *** Busy and effective on the left.
Shields ** No service but unlucky to be subbed so early.
Gilhaney **** Sharp, tricky and can score. Starting against Falkirk?
Fraser ** Lots of effort but looks out of touch at the moment.
Keogh *** Coming back onto a game after a long lay off.

REACTION

Alan Kernaghan -
"I'm bitterly frustrated and annoyed, and I'm tearing my hair out. We never looked comfortable with things in our box today. We've conceded another own goal which we could have done without. The substitutions made a difference and we managed to get back into it. We were able to get forward with a bit more competence. We talked about them at half-time, but I lost the plot in the end. I was shouting for a 4th sub near the end, so I've apologised to Billy for that."

"Paul Shields has done ok, but there are little things we need to work on. There are things we expect from him that he's not doing, but that will come. We need to get him to know how we want him to play really. The games have been coming thick and fast since he signed, which hasn't been ideal."

"Mark Gilhaney has been fantastic, he's been sharp and seems to get on the end of things. If it's right to give the youngsters a chance then that's what we'll do, but we're not going to start throwing them in willy nilly."

"We're looking for second place now, as it looks like the title is in Falkirk's hands. It was always going to be hard for us even before tonight's results."

Pat Keogh - "We weren't with the pace of the game at all, and Alloa did well. Usually they come here and just play one man up front but they are fighting for their lives. It did look as though they were going to score first and they did. Games tend to go a bit flat in the run in, but we just need to hang in there and keep winning games. The substitutions made the difference again, and I was glad to get some more action under my belt. When the ball came over I was going to try and head it but it dropped quickly so I just had to guide it in. It came off my shin though! I need to work hard in training to get back to the level of fitness I had before I got injured."

PICTURES

TOP: Paul Shields slides in during the first half.
MIDDLE: Pat Keogh scores as Mark Gilhaney looks on.

All pictures courtesy of Frank Tocher and