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Clyde 0 v 1 Falkirk

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: Broadwood Stadium
Date: Saturday, 16th April 2005
Kick Off: 3:00pm
Attendance: 1
Clyde
v
Falkirk

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Clyde faced newly crowned First Division Champions Falkirk with just thirteen fit players and things looked even bleaker within six minutes of the start of the match when the visitors were awarded what appeared to be a rather soft penalty kick.

Clyde captain John Potter was alleged to have caught Russell Latapy on the ankle just after the Trinidadian star had jinked past John to reach the bye line. The adjudged unfair tackle certainly caused Latapy to stumble but he kept on his feet and was moving forward with the ball when the referee pointed to the spot.

Russell Latapy converted the penalty in some style, chipping the spot kick straight ahead and into the net as Bryn Halliwell tried to anticipate the Falkirk man's actions by jumping towards the far post.

Shortly after the early goal, Mark Gilhaney tried a rising shot but the Bairns' keeper Allan Ferguson dealt with it comfortably.

In the tenth minute it looked to be Clyde's turn to have an opportunity from the penalty spot when the Bully Wee's former player-manager Alan Kernaghan appeared to block an effort from Ian Harty with his arm. However, the latter's protests to the referee went unheeded.

The Clyde youngsters Greenhill and Bradley, neither used to a place in the starting eleven, were certainly making a good early impression, with David Greenhill showing some confidence in attempting a great diagonal ball towards Mark Gilhaney on the far side, but the Falkirk goalie raced from his line to smother at the edge of his area.

In the twenty-second minute mark, and twenty-five yards from goal, Graeme Jones showed all his experience as he turned his marker before curling a rising shot from the edge of the area which went inches wide of the far junction of post and bar.

Under-strength Clyde were confounding those observers who had predicted a big score in Falkirk's favour and next up it was Mark Gilhaney, whose shot from six yards out forced Ferguson to pull off a fine one-handed save.

However, it was far from one-way traffic, as Halliwell showed his worth when he denied Falkirk's Australian striker Danny McBreen with a smothering save at his near post.

Five minutes from half-time this resilient Clyde side again came close to an equaliser when Alex Burns blasted a free-kick from nearly thirty yards that punctured the wall but flew inches over the top.

In the fifty-first minute, David Greenhill forced Ferguson into action again with an ambitious long-range effort after taking a measured pass inside from Burns. Still thirty yards out, Greenhill hammered a rising shot that sent the keeper scampering back towards goal before tipping the ball over the top for a corner.

Six minutes later it looked as if Clyde's only two substitutes would be needed at once as Bryn Halliwell and Alex Burns collided when going for a high ball and the Division's No.1 keeper fell awkwardly. Both team's physios successfully treated the unfortunate players.

In the fifty-eighth minute danger man McBreen burst through the Clyde rear-guard into the box on the left but a superb John Potter sliding tackle saved the day, as the ball was swept away. McBreen had gone down after the Potter tackle but Referee Willie Young had a clear view of the action and waved play on as McBreen pleaded without result.

Falkirk then looked to double their lead from a Latapy free kick after the lively little forward had been brought down by Alex Burns just a couple of yards form the edge of the penalty area. Quite definitely in Latapy scoring territory, there was some relief when the ball floated over the defensive wall and just touched the the bar on its way over.

The game, very scrappy at times, ended 1-0 but a valiant Clyde display probably merited getting something from the match as John Hughes indicated after the match. "I was happy with the first half, stated the Bairns' boss "but we've our defence to thank for the win in the second half."

Billy Reid bewailed his side's luck when it comes to penalties. "We've had no luck with penalties this season and that one looked soft. And we should have had a spot-kick when Kernaghan handled."

The manager, like the majority of the supporters, will have appreciated a Clyde side full of endeavour, spirit and no little skill.

Clyde: Halliwell, Greenhills (Gardiner 76), Potter, Bradley, Espinola, Burns, Gibson, Gilhaney, Bryson, Jones, Harty.
Subs Not Used: Morrison.

Falkirk: Ferguson, Kernaghan, Campbell, James, Scally, McKenize, McStay, Latapy, McPherson, McBreen (Thomson 83), O'Neil (Lawrie 71).
Subs Not Used: Marshall, Barr, Hill.

Referee: W Young