Brechin City v Stenhousemuir at Glebe Park, Brechin on 4.5.19
Ladbrokes SPFL League One Att 565
Brechin City 1[Jackson 48] Stenhousemuir 1 [McGuigan 24]
Brechin City – Bowman, Hill, Spark, C.Tapping, Jackson, J.Tapping [b88], Robertson [b33] [Smith 70], Kavanagh [Jamieson 62], Thomson, Scobbie and Miller. Subs not used – McLean, Burns, McGeever, Sinclair and O’Neil
Stenhousemuir – Smith [b90], Reid, Donaldson [b62], Neill, Marsh [b90], Ferry [Gibbons 50], McGuigan, Munro [b22], Dingwall [Cook 57], McBrearty [so 53] and Hurst [Dickson 83]. Subs not used – McMinn, Duthie, Breadner and Halleran
Referee – Euan Anderson Assistants – Douglas Ross and Kevin Lindsay
This was the last game of the regular season and the Warriors knew that if they could at least get a share of the spoils they would secure a play-off spot and live to fight another day. Brechin on the other hand knew that they had to win or else they would be relegated for the second season in succession.
The Brechin pitch wasn’t looking at its best and this along with the tension involved in the fixture didn’t auger well for free flowing football though on this occasion it is fair to say that it was the result that mattered rather than how it was gained.
Brechin almost took the lead in the 4th minute of the game after contesting a bounce ball with Ross Kavanagh firing just wide. This set the stamp on how the game would be played and Graeme Smith vented his feelings at Morgyn Neill at allowing the shot in the first place. Precedent had been set and the bounce ball was contested by both teams for the rest of the match.
Callum Tapping struck a decent free kick in the 22nd minute that Smith did well to save but it was the Warriors who took the lead two minutes later when their best passing move of the game so far was rewarded when Ruaridh Donaldson and Mark McGuigan combined for the latter to fire home from close range. There was a scare for the visitors on the half hour when a corner almost sneaked in at the near post but apart from that incident Stenhousemuir were relatively comfortable for the rest of the half.
Brechin however started the second period more brightly and they equalised in the 48th minute when Andy Jackson headed home a Tam Scobbie cross. Kieran Gibbons came on in the 50th minute and shortly after he took to the pitch he had a good opportunity but Dougie Hill managed to take the sting out of the strike and Graham Bowman made a comfortable gather.
Stenhousemuir’s task became harder in the 53rd minute when Connor McBrearty was dismissed for what was deemed a dangerous tackle. There was no intent apart from winning the ball but he had caught a Brechin player as he had stretched to make an ill advised challenge. He became the fourth Stenhousemuir player to be sent off against Brechin this season.
Despite having the numerical advantage Brechin were not making inroads to the Stenhousemuir box and in fact it was the Warriors who came closest to getting the next goal when David Marsh headed an Alan Cook cross over the bar. Andy Munro then had a volley just over after showing great technique for a defender to get on the end of a Greg Hurst cutback at a corner kick.
Brechin had to attack and they were being exposed at the back and in the latter stages of the game Sean Dickson and McGuigan came close to settling the game. The best chance though was following a Gibbons run from his own box and then combined with McGuigan but with only the keeper to beat he blasted over.
This hardly settled the nerves of the supporters and there was always a danger that one last push by the home side could decide the game and that Stenhousemuir would regret their misses.
With the game in stoppage time Brechin did get a chance at a set piece that fell to Graham Bowman who had foraged up the park and the ex-Warrior hit a powerful effort that luckily for Stenhousemuir was blocked and there was relief when the final whistle blew and they gave themselves a chance to remain in League One though it could be just prolonging the agony.
|May 4, 2019||3:00 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1||2018/19||90'|