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Clyde 3 v 3 Stirling Albion

Match Type: Friendly
Venue: Broadwood Stadium
Date: Tuesday, 27th July 2004
Kick Off: 7:45pm
Attendance: 468
Stirling Albion

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by Alan Henderson

Mensing, Greenhill, Balmer, Fotheringham
Bryson, Pinkowski, Gibson, McCracken
Arbuckle, Harty
(Subs: Gilhaney, Potter, Hudson, Glancy (T), Doyle, McKeever, Morrison)

With time running out until the season begins, the search for a competitive formula continues. Clyde showed some resilience in fighting back to a draw but everybody must be worried if the boys can fill the gaps that have been left from last season. This was Harty’s first outing and to add some spice former Bully Wee man John Fraser was a trialist for Stirling. clyde had some experience at the back but Stirling overall were physically stronger and it showed from the start. While Stirling pinged the ball into the corners and got behind Clyde, Clyde struggled to produced any attacking football. The lack of either physique from the boys or attitude and effort from the men was all too obvious.

Stirling took a deserved lead through Scott McLean. He was given too much time to turn at the edge of the box and blast a strike past young Findlay. Before Clyde could recover another was scored by Fraser. Findlay stopped the initial strike but the ball broke to the former Clyde man and he picked his spot in the corner.

At this stage it looked a case of how many as Clyde looked lost. Billy Reid had seen enough and pulled McCracken off to be replaced by Potter with Fotheringham moving into left midfield. This seemed to steady the ship and Clyde grabbed a goal back as Stirling eased off with Harty tapping in from point-blank range.

Clyde looked much more settled as Stirling sat in and produced an equaliser. Arbuckle found space in the box and squared to Bryson for the youngster to slot home with ease. Clyde then replaced Greenhill with trialist Martin Glancy and played three up front for while. Just before the break Arbuckle had an appalling miss when given all the time in the world he couldn’t beat the keeper.

Clyde began the second spell well enough but soon rang the changes with Doyle, Gilhaney and Hudson replacing Balmer, Harty and Pinkowski. All these changes seemed to unsettle Clyde and Stirling began to threaten again. McLean found space in the Clyde box but was blatantly pulled back for an obvious penalty. McLean himself made easy work of the penalty.

Clyde looked forlorn at this point with Stirling pouring forward as Clyde’s attacks broke down. Stirling should probably have bagged a couple more goals. Only in the final quarter did Clyde begin to pressure the Stirling defence. Fotheringham headed over from from a corner kick and then rattled the cross bar with another header. Glancy and Gilhaney were causing problems and it was Glancy who eventually scored. His flying bicycle kick off the underside of the bar left Striling rueing their missed chances as Clyde finished the game strongly.
On this evidence Clyde had better get things sorted out very quickly or else we’ll simply be overpowered in the First Division. We must find either strength or experience especially in the midfield.

Clyde Star Ratings (*****)
Findlay *** The odd flap but looked okay.
Mensing **** Looked ready for the real stuff.
Fotheringham ** Not sure if the fans will accept his casual style this season.
Greenhills ** Struggled against stronger players.
Balmer ** Needs to be more dominant at the back and lead.
Pinkowski *** Showed some fine passing once he settled down and found space.
Bryson *** Lasted the full 90 with plenty in the tank.
Gibson *** Faded in and out but often was very isolated in midfield.
Arbuckle ** Showed well but missed a sitter.

Harty *** The main threat and the speculation intensifies.
McCracken * Looked overawed on the left but possibly injured.
Potter *** Some dominant play but some awful passing too.
Glancy *** Put in the effort and scored a cracker.
Gilhaney ** Seems lacking in confidence.
Doyle *** Usual steady stuff from the right back.
Hudson * Strong enough but poor touch and passing.