Clyde’s faint survival hopes are now all but extinguished despite an entertaining 3-3 draw against Dumbarton; a result which was a repeat of the early season meeting of the sides.
The Bully Wee made one change to the starting line-up that cruised to a 3-0 win at Stenhousemuir on Saturday, with John Stewart replacing Willie Sawyers up front. Dumbarton chose to field their four attacking threats, with Derek Carcary and Stevie Murray on either wing and David Winters and Dennis Wyness up front.
With the confidence gained from such an emphatic victory, Clyde started in a positive fashion and had a couple of early corners. However, from these the Sons showed their threat on the breakaway, particularly through the lightening quick Carcary and it took a last ditch tackle from Neil McGowan to stop him racing through on goal.
It took another last ditch tackle by Ally Park to this time stop Winters from running clean through but from the resulting corner, Dumbarton took the lead. The ball was cleared to the far post and it appeared half of the Clyde team assumed it was about to bounce out of play. Unfortunately, Wyness pulled the ball down out of the air and returned it into the middle, where Winters knocked it down into the path of Carcary who made no mistake with a left-footed shot from 10 yards.
The Bully Wee responded well and were level soon after. Chris Smith sliced a horrible clearance up into the air and as Stewart got goal-side of him, the centre half barged into the back of Clyde’s centre forward before the ball dropped to earth. There was no repeat of the arguments ahead of the missed penalty against Alloa as Adam Strachan stepped up to the spot and slotted the ball neatly into the bottom corner.
Again, Clyde looked marginally the better side at this point but a useful tactical switch by Dumbarton saw Carcary switch to the left-hand side and he soon restored their lead. His electric pace saw him get in behind Willie McLachlan and as Callum Reidford tried to close him down, the ex-Rangers youngster fired the ball into the corner of the net.
Clyde’s response was good and Stewart missed two good chances to level before the interval. The impressive Strachan raced onto Aleksandrs Gramovics’ through ball and from his cross into the middle, the striker headed the ball just past the post. The second opportunity saw Strachan close down Iain Chisholm’s poor clearance and after charging forward, swung in another good cross. This time, Stewart pulled the ball down and neatly turned the defender, only for his finish from 6 yards to soar high over the crossbar.
Typically, the home side appeared to have produced the clinching goal just before half-time as they punished Clyde’s lack of a cutting edge. Carcary’s pace again caused all the problems and from his ball into the middle, Winters eluded Lithgow before sliding home past Reidford.
There was to be no instant response after the interval as Dumbarton started to stroke the ball around with some confidence. Carcary always earned his hat-trick with a header from Murray’s cross but Reidford pulled off a good save diving to his left. Kevin Higgins then replaced Dmitrijs Borisovs in a move that saw Strachan move up front.
Reidford was again the hero minutes later as Wyness moved into the box but with only the ‘keeper to beat thumped his shot against Clyde’s number one. That chance was then replicated at the other end as Strachan sent John Stewart through on goal but with only the ‘keeper to beat he chose to try and round Michael White and the chance was lost.
Play then appeared to be heading towards an easy home win for the home side but Clyde were soon shocked into action by a stunning goal. A set piece was cleared as far as Neil McGowan and from 30 yards out, the left-back unleashed a missile of a shot into the top corner.
The Bully Wee then piled on some pressure and Dumbarton withdrew the outstanding Carcary who had caused both McLachlan and Gramovics to pick up bookings for professional fouls on the winger, for the more defensive Ross O’Donaghue. This didn’t pay off though as Clyde earned a deserved equaliser. Dumbarton again failed to clear a corner and Stewart did well to nip in ahead of Scott Chaplain as the midfielder attempted an acrobatic clearance. His boot clattered into the Clyde striker and the referee once more awarded a spot-kick. Once more, Strachan slotted the ball into the bottom corner of the net.
The final chance fell to the home team but Winters’ free kick was comfortably stopped by Reidford. It is not often that supporters leave a 3-3 draw debating the poor quality of finishing but both sides missed a series of good opportunities to score more goals. Despite needing a win to keep alive the ridiculous notion of staying in the division, there were more positive signs from a Clyde perspective. Again, Stevenson had a very good game in midfield and both goal-scorers performed well throughout. The Bully Wee were just unfortunate to come up against a player in Carcary who would have caused any team problems on the night.
|April 13, 2010
|Scottish League One