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Clyde 4 v 1 Raith Rovers

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: Broadwood Stadium
Date: Saturday, 17th April 2004
Kick Off: 3:00pm
Attendance: 1,533
Clyde
v
Raith Rovers

Hide Match Report

by Alan Henderson

LINE-UP

Halliwell

Mensing McCluskey McLaughlin Fotheringham


Ross Gibson Marshall


Harty McConalogue Smith

SUBS: Hagen (Fotheringham 67), Morrison, Doyle, Keogh (Harty 74), Gilhaney (McConlaogue 46).

RAITH ROVERS: Berthelot, Capin, Bornes, Dennis, Stanic, Nanou, Brady, Paquito, Calderon (Maxwell 68), Dow (Boyle 81), Ferrero. SUBS NOT USED: Smart, Gonzalez, Young.

REPORT

Clyde endured an awful start but eventually overcame ten-man Raith with ease. Raith must have fancied their chances after scoring within two minutes but after Gibson equalised and Stanic was sent off it was a question of whether Rovers could hold on. They frustrated Clyde for thirty minutes of the second half but after McCluskey made the breakthrough it was a question of how many.

Both teams were hampered in the warm up as Pereria pulled up for Raith and mysteriously Austin McCann was apparently taken to one side and informed he was suspended and replaced by Fotheringham. The game had hardly started before Raith stormed into the lead. Giant striker Ferrero collected the ball, turned and fired a sweeping drive past Halliwell from the edge of the box. Raith were full of confidence and kept the ball with Clyde chasing shadows for a while. Player/Manager, Calderon, was pulling the strings and working the fouls as only he can. His experience earned him six 'fouls' in the opening eleven minutes. Clyde eventually got to grips with the game and Harty and Smith began timing their runs better as the Raith goal came under threat. Berthelot pulled off a couple of fine reflex saves before Clyde made the breakthrough. Harty was sent clear through the middle and drove into the box with Gibson in support. Harty dallied and seemed to lose his chance but saw Gibson in the clear. Gibson also took an eternity to get his shot away but it found the net via a defender on the line. It was all Clyde now as they pushed for another goal. Harty got the wrong side of Stanic and the defender knocked the ball away with his hand earning him a yellow card. Two minutes later Harty repeated the feat and Stanic decided to take him for a waltz and earned his second yellow. Raith decided to sit in after this and Clyde pushed for another goal but again Berthelot was in no mood to concede another goal.

Clyde made a change at half time by putting on Gilhaney for the quiet McConalogue. Raith put everybody behind the ball and looked determined to secure a point. Frustrated and running out of ideas Keogh was surprisingly brought on for Harty. Fotheringham's temperament was tested again with another yellow card and the Manager decided to pull him off and put Hagen on. With the game entering the final quarter Gilhaney's persistence won another corner. The inswinger was met by McCluskey's head and despite the keeper forcing the ball onto the underside of the bar it fell behind him and into the net. Raiths legs and attitude seemed to buckle at this point and two minutes later Clyde claimed another goal. Having dragged Raith from flank to flank Mensing put a lovely reverse 'dink' into the box to be met by the head of Gibson to flick the ball over the keeper and into the net. Gibson was looking for his hat-trick and very nearly got it as he raced into the box again. His shot came off the inside of the post only to fall to Keogh who tapped the ball home from a few yards out.

Clyde recovered from the worst possible start and were helped by a sending off, but scoring four at home must boost the confidence for the run in. If Inverness keep winning too then our next home game against them could be winner-takes-all. Could be quite a fixture

STAR RATINGS *****

Halliwell *** Would give him more but he had so little to do.
Mensing **** Back to form with a more creative display.
Fotheringham *** Neat enough player but temperament a problem.
McCluskey ***** Fine performance and a goal to round it off.
McLaughlin *** A bit rusty with some clumsy passing.
Ross **** Got stronger as the game went on.
McConalogue ** Struggled to make an impact and subbed at half time.
Marshall **** Looked in the mood today and ran for ninety minutes.
Smith **** Not may chances but put Raith under constant pressure.
Gibson ***** Showed the lot again and nearly claimed a hat-trick
Harty **** Must be due a goal or two soon?

Gilhaney ** Didn't make his usual impact.
Keogh ** Scored but not much else.
Hagen ** Shored up the left after Fotheringham went off.

REACTION

ALAN KERNAGHAN - "It was a poor opening 20 minutes and losing a goal sets you back on your heels but after that we battled away well without playing well. Once we got the second goal then we were able to take charge of the game more. I think you have to expect games to be tense at this stage.

"After the sending off we tried to make the pitch as big as possible and stretch them and we were able to do that after the second goal. I said to the players at half-time that we had to move the ball quicker because they were going to try and get men behind the ball and frustrate us, which is totally understandable when you are down to 10 men.

"If we keep winning then nobody can catch us - it's as simple as that. It's going to get very tough because the next four games are very difficult, with three away from home. It's going to be hard work but you wouldn't expect anything else in this league it's been tight all the way.

JIMMY GIBSON - "I thought I had a hat trick but the wind took it away! We were getting overrun in the first 10 minutes with Raith playing 5 in the middle but the gaffer changed it and it seemed to work. It was a good performance in the end.

"I don't know how I got Ian to pass the ball over to me for the first goal - I think he must have thought I was big Smudger!

"The gaffer keeps telling us that it's all about the points at this stage of the season and how we get them doesn't bother us. I think people are expecting us to fall at the final hurdle but we're not interested in what people say. We know what we can do. Maybe we don't play the best of football but we can get points.

"If we get into the SPL then it's something that I will look forward to. I think the prospect has driven all the boys on because everyone wants to play at that level.

"It was hard leaving Rangers but I had to do it because I was only playing reserve football. Clyde have given me the chance to play first-team football and I'm really enjoying it. To be playing on a Saturday is far better than Monday night reserve games. I still speak to a few of the boys at Ibrox but we're having a better season than them!

"I had a few injury problems there and it was always stop-start for me. Every time I played I did quite well and I was always in and around the first-team squad but I knew that I had to be playing every week this season. There was no point in the odd game here and there anymore.

"I don't want to look back. I was there for 8 years and had a good time but I just want to concentrate on Clyde now.

"If the club make me an offer then I would obviously consider it. I'm happy where I am and hopefully it can be sorted out as quickly as possible."

JACK ROSS - "It looks like a good result on paper but it wasn't that comfortable for long spells. We stuck at our task and once we got the second goal we were ok. If we'd managed to get that earlier it would have helped us enormously. We looked like we were going to score before half-time but they managed to survive and came out ready to defend.

"I thought today was probably the most patient I've heard the fans at Broadwood because it wasn't brilliant at times but they got behind us and that made a difference. Sometimes at this stage when you've got weary legs it helps drag you over the finish line. At Broadwood the backing is not always as effective as it is away from home and everybody knows that but I thought today they stuck with us and we need that encouragement.

"Sometimes it's hard being outnumbered in the middle of the park at the moment and obviously we changed it today. Some days it goes for you when you start the game well and the forwards get on the ball and some days it doesn't and you have to rectify that.

"The good thing this season more than others is that we've been able to chop and change our formation when before we were so rigid with the 3-5-2 and we found it quite difficult to adapt. This season we've moved to a 4-4-2 which has brought us a lot of success and we've also played 4-3-3 and even 3-4-3 today."

DAVE MARTIN - "I think the sending off was the turning point in the game. We played well during the first 15 minutes but you just can't afford to play the league leaders with 10 men and Clyde are a big strong team.

"Our centre forward pulled his hamstring in the warm-up so we had to adjust and change our side. We lost an equaliser that was a very bad goal to lose from our point of view. We didn't clear our lines and we got caught.

"I don't think it was a sending off and maybe the TV pictures will show that. The striker seemed to be a yard offside. The referee has a hard decision to make but I thought it was hard. If you look at the handball, the ball was going over his head and the wind has caught it; I don't think it was intentional.

"To get a result at Broadwood you've got to be at your best. Clyde are top on merit and they are steamrollering teams. If you give them half a chance they take it and they just go on from there. There's a great confidence and team spirit about them. I think there's no doubt that they'll win it. As I said, their team spirit is unbelievable, they all work hard for each other and they've got enough personnel."

PICTURES

TOP: Kevin Fotheringham fires in a free-kick.
MIDDLE: Stuart McCluskey celebrates his first goal for the club.
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Pictures courtesy of Mark Craig and