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St. Mirren 2 v 1 Clyde

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: St.Mirren Park
Date: Saturday, 30th August 2003
Kick Off: 3:00pm
Attendance: 3,010
St. Mirren
v
Clyde

Hide Match Report

by Alan Henderson

LINE-UP

Halliwell

Doyle Millen Potter

Ross Hagen

Fraser McGroarty
Gibson


Harty Gilhaney

SUBS: Smith (Gibson 86), Clark, Marshall, Greenhill, Halliday.

REPORT

Clyde were unlucky not to take anything from this encounter at Love Street. They took the lead in the second half and looked as though they would go on to seal the game. St Mirren had other plans though and snatched victory with a late winner. Still considering the team Clyde were forced to field and the fact this was only Clyde's second League defeat since December then overall the Bully Wee are still in good shape.

Injuries and illness meant Clyde had to do without the services of Kernaghan, Mensing, McLaughlin, McConalogue and Keogh. That left Clyde having to introduce new boys, McGroarty and Gibson, from the start and the back three consisted of Doyle, Millen and Potter. The fear was that Clyde lacked presence all around the pitch but this proved to be anything but the case, Clyde started at a good pace and pressed St Mirren back. Harty had a chance in the box but pulled his shot wide. After the initial burst the game settled into a tame affair with neither keeper being troubled much. Hagen tried to liven things up with a piledriver being tipped over by Hinchcliffe in the Saints goal. Harty and Gilhaney were showing plenty of spirit up front but Gilhaney in particular was wasting good openings and fluffed a good chance from the edge of the box.

Clyde resumed after the break with the same eleven and finally made the breakthrough after ten minutes. A corner fell to Gilhaney and his volley was deflected into the goal. The confidence was lifted as Clyde sought another goal to seal the game. McGroarty's corners were causing the Saints defence all sorts of problems. Gilhaney was sent through and saw his shot come off the inside of the post and Ross should have done better with a diving header in front of goal. Clyde only held the lead for about ten minutes as Saints equalised from a free kick. A flick-on found Russel at the far post and he headed into the roof of the net. Both teams went for the winner but it was Saints who found it. A quickly taken free kick found Russell and he skinned Potter before driving into the box and placing the ball past Halliwell. Clyde threw on Andy Smith for the final few minutes and at the death the ball got stuck between his feet in front of goal and he could only shoot weakly.

This was a game that should have been won but at least we learned that with all the players missing through injury and illness we do appear to have some depth to the squad after all.

STAR RATINGS

Halliwell *** Not much to do but had no chance with either goal.
Doyle *** Steady stuff and more experience gained.
Potter ** Given a hard time from a big and confident forward.
Gibson *** Worked away well enough in the engine room.
Fraser ** Made little impression on the game.
Ross *** Much better display from the captain.
Hagen *** Always looked a threat and got back well too.
Millen *** A hard shift in a new role at centre half.
Harty *** Plenty of effort in his natural position.
Gilhaney *** Sharp and incisive but needs to finish better.
McGroarty *** Confident debut form the Pars man.

Smith * No time to do much.

REACTION


ALAN KERNAGHAN - "I thought we should have taken something from the game so I'm disappointed, but we had pretty much the opposite last week so I suppose it evens itself out. We can't rely on our defence all the time; we have to start taking our chances in front of goals. That costs us today, and we've been struggling with it all season. The front two looked lively today. Gilhaney was unlucky with his shot that hit the post, but apart from that there wasn't much else. The disallowed goal looked like a foul, but I didn't have a good view so I can't really comment.

"We had eight players injured, of which probably six would have been playing - but that's no excuse. It's a hiccup. The players are very disappointed but we'll get back to work on Monday. With a bit of luck 2 or 3 players should be back before our next match.

"Chris McGroarty has only trained with us twice, Jimmy Gibson was playing his first full match and Paul Doyle made his debut so although we can improve I'm pretty happy with the way we played.