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Clyde 1 v 0 Arbroath

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: Broadwood Stadium
Date: Saturday, 18th August 2001
Kick Off: 3:00pm
Clyde
v
Arbroath

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by Alan Henderson
Line up: Halliwell, Murray, Dunn, Smith, Cranmer, Ross, Mitchell, Millen, Keogh, Aitken, Hinds (Subs: Budinaukas, Convery, Crawford, McClay, Okikiolu)

It wasn't pretty to watch and gave the fans very little encouragement for the future, but it was a win. Everybody was expecting a continuation of Tuesday's goal feast - except a determined Arbroath. They came with a simple plan to not concede a goal, break the rhythm of the game and try to hit on the break. It is to their credit that it nearly worked. Gordon Greer was sighted in the stand and we were 'treated' to the playing of updated and reworked versions of '1,2,3 Bully Wee for me' and 'The Song of the Clyde'. Apparently a CD will be available soon.

With a crowd of under 800 (where have they gone?) the atmosphere was flat and the game reflected that. It took Clyde almost 10 mins to mount an attack with Millen directing a free kick back across the face of the goal but with no takers. Hinds and Keogh were both holding the ball up well but Arbroath were giving very little space to work in. One neat move saw the strikers combine and Keogh let go with a good shot but it didn't trouble the keeper. All Clyde could produce was a couple of weak shots from distance and the tall Arbroath defence had little trouble dealing with corners. Arbroath had a couple of forays up the park but with no support for their strikers the moves came to nothing. By half time everybody at Broadwood had realised that this was going to be a very awkward game.

During half time a new Clyde song was played. Sorry, but I can't remember what it was called. Anyway it covered leaving Shawfield, moving around and fan loyalty. It could be judged as a 'soulful ballad' or cruelly as an overly long 'dirge'.

The Manager changed things a half time and sacrificed a midfielder (Aitken) for another attacker (Convery). Clyde began a bit more brightly but still no clear cut chances were being created. Only a looping header by Ross troubled the Arbroath keeper. Arbroath's plan was starting to work and Clyde were committing too many forward. Following a couple of scares the Red Lichties had the best chance of the game. A quick break left the winger with Halliwell to beat from about 10 yards out. Halliwell bravely threw himself at the feet of the winger and his shot went wide. Halliwell hurt his leg in process and was soon replaced by Budinaukas. Just as Arbroath were starting to threaten Clyde struck. Keogh showed some skill on the by-line and fired over a powerful cross. The hapless Cuisack could only turn the ball into his own net. Clyde tried to kill the game with a second, but only a snapshot from McClay came close. Then at the death Arbroath nearly snatched an equaliser. A deep free kick was met with a powerful downward header that Budinaukas did very well to parry over the bar.

Victory was warmly welcomed but the overall attacking performance raises little confidence. Arbroath were there to frustrate Clyde, and that they certainly did. However, a few years ago this is exactly the sort of game that Clyde would have lost. Now, despite an indifferent performance these are the type of games that can be negotiated with a positive result. The bigger crowd on Tuesday night will lift the spirit of the team.