Forfar Athletic v Stenhousemuir at Station Park, Forfar on 23.1.16
Ladbrokes League One Att 532
Forfar Athletic 0 Stenhousemuir 1 [Stirling 45]
Forfar Athletic – Hill, Baxter [b74], Campbell, Travis [Nicol 39], O’Brien, Young, Kader [Hay 84], Martin [b57], Ryan, Swankie and Smith [Denholm 66]. Subs not used – Hodge, Fotheringham, Kennedy and King.
Stenhousemuir – Bowman, McCormack, Paterson [b30], Meechan, Murray [b56], J.Robertson, Gilhaney, Millar, McMenamin [Scotland 86][Small 89], Stirling [b74] and Cook [b44][Marenghi 71]. Subs not used – Malcolm, Summers, Shaw and McCroary.
Referee – Mat Northcroft Assistants – Stuart Hodge and George Robertson.
Both teams gave starting debuts to players in this game with the hosts fielding Andy Ryan who had been released from Hamilton Academical. Stenhousemuir had Graham Bowman on loan from Falkirk having signed on the Friday prior to the game to replace the injured Jamie Barclay whilst Dean Shaw was also struggling with injury though was on the bench for this game.
Bowman was to be busy in the early stages of the game as Forfar took the game to the visitors and looked to kick start their game with an early goal. Certainly their best opportunities came in this spell and Iain Campbell hit a powerful drive that Bowman pushed wide in only the second minute of the game. In the sixth minute Michael Travis was denied at close range when the keeper saved a header with an instinctive save. There was a real let off just after this when an Omar Kader cross almost sneaked in hitting the base of the post before going out for a goal kick. At the other end Alan Cook saw a free kick comfortably saved by Darren Hill before Bowman pushed out a Ryan strike from the edge of the box. All this happened in a frenetic first ten minutes but gradually the Warriors got to grips with the game and Forfar found it harder to breakdown a disciplined defence and midfield. Cook shot over in the 22nd minute after a Mark Gilhaney shot was blocked and four minutes later the best move for Stenhousemuir so far almost culminated in a goal but Gilhaney shot wide when in space after being played through by Ross Meechan who then continued his run and thus dragged a defender out of position. Forfar suffered a blow when Travis went off through injury in the 39th minute but two minutes later they should have scored after Craig Smith beat his marker and cut inside but with only the keeper to beat he dragged his shot wide. In the last minute of the half Kader hit a volley through a ruck of players that Bowman must have seen late but he was get down and push the effort wide. That proved to be a viral save as before the half time whistle blew the Warriors had taken the lead. They were awarded a free kick on the left touchline and Gilhaney picked out an unmarked Stephen Stirling on the 18 yard line and he had the time to hit a curling shot that Hill could only help into his own net.
In the second period Forfar were in the main kept at arms length and although Smith had a shot that was pushed just wide and a Gavin Swankie effort took a deflection that Bowman did well to react to there was little to trouble the Warriors defence. Indeed a superb tackle by Derek Young on Jon Robertson only six yards from goal prevented a second Stenhousemuir goal.
The game became tousy at times and Stephen Stirling and were Mark Baxter were cautioned for an altercation with both possibly lucky to stay on the park.
With four minutes to go Jason Scotland came on for his first outing since Dunfermline in December but he only lasted three minutes before he broke down with another hamstring injury and this brought a shadow on an otherwise productive day for the Warriors.
|January 23, 2016||3:00 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1||2015/2016||90'|
|Station Park, Forfar|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|