Match Report


Cowdenbeath v Stenhousemuir 
Irn Bru League Three                                        Att 459
Cowdenbeath 1 [Dempster 84]                Stenhousemuir 0
The clash of the top two was the start of a double header between the teams but it was important that the Warriors got a share of the points at least in the first meeting if they were going to put pressure on the league leaders.
Once again Stenhousemuir changed formation and personnel going back to a back four with captain John Ovenstone dropping out of the squad as the centre half combination of Chris McLeod and Jordan Smith resumed their partnership. Paul Tyrrell returned to the midfield and Alan Morgan made his first start for the club. There a surprise inclusion of the bench with Stevie Ferguson featuring after his announcement of retirement the previous week but this will only be a temporary arrangement as it is a condition the new employment that he starts in March that he must retire from the professional game. With Ovenstone missing he captain’s armband and responsibilities were passed on to Willie Lyle who had been sent off in the last meeting at Central Park.
With a strong wind blowing down the exposed playing field and also due to the importance of the game this was almost inevitably a scrappy affair with few chances from either side. For much of the game the home side rare threats came from the aerial bombardment of the long throw ins of John Gemmell but the Warrior’s defence stood resolute to this tactic. Stenhousemuir main danger was from headed passes by Scott Dalziel which should have caused problems but his striking partner Iain Diack looked to be on a different wavelength and the openings usually fizzled out.
Both keepers had little to do in the first period but Bennett looked to be beaten on the half hour when Graeme Brown shot from an acute angle after Cowdenbeath’s best move of the game but to the relief of the keeper he was able to stop the ball from going in with the aid of the post.
Stenhousemuir only brought David Hay into play with efforts in the latter stages of the half first through a Tyrrell effort after he swivelled in the box to make room but failed to get power into the shot and this meant a comfortable save for the keeper. The Warrior’s best move of the half came in the 44th minute with a sweeping move that ended with a well timed run into the box by Molloy but his header went straight to the keeper. 
 The Warriors almost opened the scoring through a McLeod header from a Thomson corner but it was scrambled off the line much to the relief of the home side. A minute later Diack was released by Dalziel but he did not have the strength to hold off defender Joe Mbu.
Just after this Cowdenbeath brought on Marek Tomana and the ex-Stirling Albion player brought an added dimension to the home side with his running starting to open up gaps in the Stenhousemuir ranks and gave a lift to the home side. 
Both sides best efforts after this though went wide of the target with Gemmell coming close for Cowden and Kevin Motion for Stenhousemuir who was unlucky to see a hooked effort go the wrong side of the post
Cowdenbeath took the lead in the 84th minute when ex-Warrior John Dempster delivered the fatal blow when he turned a John Gemmell headed pass from a Derek Fleming free kick into the net. The free kick had seen Craig Molloy booked as he had to stop the play after the ball had been given away cheaply in midfield by Tyrrell.
In the final minute of the game the Warriors had two chances to get back on level terms but failed to capitalise on their chances. The first saw two Stenhousemuir players collide with each other at close range to the goal and the last touches of the game saw David Hay tip over a Robert Love swerving effort to secure the win for the home side
This defeat was the first that John Coughlin had suffered against Cowdenbeath in nine matches as a manager of both Berwick Rangers and Stenhousemuir. Any realistic hopes of league titles for Stenhousemuir now depend on the Fifers hitting a bad run of results as they are now eight points clear with two games in hand but they show no sign of slipping as this was the tenth game in succession that they have picked up at least a point with the last defeat coming in November when Stenhousemuir were the victors.
Cowdenbeath – Hay, Baxter, Fleming, McGregor, Armstrong, Mbu, Fairbairn [Ramsay 62], Shields, Dempster, Brown [Tomana 56] and Gemmell [Adamson 84]. Subs not used – Mackay and Jackson
Stenhousemuir – Bennett, Lyle [b24], McGroarty, Smith, McLeod, Tyrrell [Love 84], Molloy [b83], Thomson, Dalziel, Diack and Morgan [Motion 62]. Subs not used – Ferguson , Shirra and Renton .
Referee – John McKendrick                 Assistants – Kevin Clancy and Michael Wilson.


Date Time League Season Full Time
February 28, 2009 3:00 pm SPFL Ladbrokes League 1 2008/2009 90'


Central Park
55 Chapel St, Cowdenbeath KY4 9JL, UK


Club1st Half2nd HalfGoalsOutcome