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Airdrie United 1 v 0 Clyde

Match Type: Scottish Championship
Venue: Excelsior Stadium
Date: Sunday, 22nd February 2009
Kick Off: 3:15pm
Attendance: 1,189
Referee: D McDonald
Airdrie United


Airdrie United   Clyde
(5) Di Giacomo  

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Airdrie United   Clyde
Robertson Hutton
McLachlan Brown
Yellow Card Hazley Waddell (69)
Smyth Higgins
Donnelly Gibson
Nixon Lithgow
(71) McGuire Trouten Yellow Card
McKenna Wilson (78)
(83) Di Giacomo Clarke Red Card
McDonald McKay (46)
McLaughlin McLaren Yellow Card
(83) Lynch McSwegan (78)
Hollis Cherrie
(71) Baird T Stevenson
Smith Gemmill (46)
Brown Ruari MacLennan (69) Yellow Card

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by David Worton

BBC ALBA's first IRN-BRU league game saw Clyde take on Airdrie United in a Sunday afternoon fixture but it was the home side left happy after an early goal earned them the three points in a pretty terrible game.

Clyde were without the injured Stuart Kettlewell, the suspended Gregory Tade and Alan Lowing, who has returned to Rangers at the end of his loan spell. This saw Alan Trouten return at right wing back, with Dave McKay and Mark Brown also coming into the line-up in an attacking 3-4-3 system.

The Bully Wee have looked superior to Airdrie in recent matches and started off confidently, with McKay twice nearly finding space in the penalty area. However, from their first real attack the Diamonds took the lead as Paul Di Giacomo had time to fire in a low effort across goal. The shot appeared to be trundling wide of the post but inadvertently flicked off the inside of Chris Higgins’ calf and into the net.

This was to be their only real effort of the half as Clyde picked up the pace and the regular outlet was Willie McLaren’s speed in the channels. He rampaged forward and from his cross into the box, Clarke was inches away from slotting home McKay’s knockdown. McLaren then managed to miss three excellent chances to level the match. On the first occasion, he moved in behind the home defence but his low right footed shot was comfortably stopped by Stephen Robertson. Then, a cracking ball over the top by Marvyn Wilson released the on-form winger but with only Robertson to beat, he pulled his effort wide of the post. Finally, a neat turn in the box saw him find space but again, Robertson was to stand up well to his effort and clear for a corner. From the resulting delivery, Alan Lithgow saw his header clip the crossbar after Billy Gibson had headed back across goal.

Without really hitting form, Clyde were looking likely to get back into the game but things were to take a turn for the worst 5 minutes before the break. A loose ball was passed onwards by Stephen McKenna, only for Clarke to clatter into the midfielder. Dougie McDonald was quick to show the red card and TV pictures were later to show that although McKenna made the most of the tackle, from the referee’s angle it looked like a dangerous foul.

At the interval, Clyde introduced Scott Gemmill for McKay and the striker came close to his second goal of the season towards the start of the half as he was sent through on goal by McLaren. However, Robertson is renowned for his shot-stopping abilities and once more he was able to block the low effort and his defence cleared the danger for a Clyde corner.

That was to be the last clear cut opportunity for Clyde and David Niven came close with a header that flew over the bar for Airdrie. Di Giacomo then outmuscled Gibson but his near post shot was saved by Hutton’s foot. Gibson then popped up in the opposition box at two set pieces and on both occasions tested Robertson; the first a powerful volley, the second a stunning overhead kick. Sadly, both were straight at the goalkeeper, an action repeated by Airdrie substitute John Baird when he got on the end of Di Giacomo’s cross.

Despite introducing Gary McSwegan and Ruari MacLennan and managing to win a number of late corners and throw-ins, Clyde failed to gain the point they probably deserved and Airdrie closed to within a point over their opponents.

The long enforced break from action didn’t appear to affect Clyde but the power of Kettlewell and Tade was missed in midfield. The Bully Wee had more than enough chances to take something from the game but it was Airdrie United who got the break with their early deflected goal.

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