Match Report


Stenhousemuir v Arbroath
Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir, 16.01.10
Irn Bru Scottish Second Division                
Att 433
Stenhousemuir 1 [Love 77] Arbroath 1 [Hislop 85]
After the hullabaloo about the Dunfermline game it was good to get back to the bread and butter of the League campaign. Going into the game the Warriors made several changes to the starting eleven with Stephen Thomson, Willie Lyle, Jordan Smith and Pat Scullion all dropping out of the team and being replaced by Gary Thom, Andy Stirling and the Hibs on-loan duo of Sean Welsh and Lee Currie taking up unfamiliar positions of full backs rather than midfield roles. On the bench there was a welcome return to the ranks of Robert Love and Iain Diack who had been missing recently through injury.  Arbroath also made four changes from their last game away back on the 12th of December with Mark McCulloch, Kyle Faulds, Paul Lunan and Ewan Moyes all participating. This was Moyes first game for the club on-loan from Hibs.
With lack of games and a struggle for training facilities it was never going to be a high quality game with both sides lacking the sharpness required to create decent opportunities and indeed John Coughlin stated that “What you see is a very sluggish team coming out of cold storage and the rest of the managers will say the same We look as if we need another pre-season under our belt “.
Arbroath under the stewardship of Jim Weir are beginning to turn the corner in respect of organisational play and although the Warriors had won the previous encounters by a convincing scoreline there was never any real danger of that happening this time.
The game started with the Warriors looking to have plenty of the possession but were a bit more defensive than they can be in home matches as they still looked shells hocked from the Dunfermline display and it was almost as if they were just dipping a toe into the water at the start of the game.
As the first half progressed there was little to enthuse about as chances at either end were scarce on the ground. Arbroath had came close with a Stevie Hislop header that flashed just past the near upright in the 8th minute and he brought out the first save from either keeper in the 27th minute when he eluded three week tackles before seeing his long range effort saved by Chris McCluskey.
In the main the threat from Stenhousemuir came down the right flank where Kevin Bradley whipped in a couple of decent crosses but the Arbroath defence were able to nullify the threat by winning the aerial balls. The closest that the home side came to scoring was in the 33rd minute when an Andy Stirling corner was headed onto the top of the bar and over by Gary Thom.
Towards the end of the half Stenhousemuir had four corners in quick succession but the closest that they came to breaking the deadlock was when a Kevin Motion corner was headed into the danger area by Thom to Chris McLeod but he could only scoop the ball over the bar.
Despite Stenhousemuir having the majority of the play it was Arbroath who were looking the more likely side to score and Moyes almost capped a fine debut with a goal but his downwards header in the 54th minute went just wide of the target. There followed a last ditch tackle on Hislop as he burst into the box before Stenhousemuir created their first opportunity of the half following a strong run by Craig Molloy but his effort lacked the quality of the lead up play and went harmlessly wide.
Stenhousemuir made a double substitution to spark life into the game with Love and Diack coming on but before they got into the match Arbroath should have scored when Steven Doris played the ball to Hislop but although unmarked he mishit the shot across goal though it almost sneaked in at the far post.
With 13 minutes of the game left Stenhousemuir broke the deadlock. An Iain Thomson pass down the left channel was crossed into the danger area by Scott Dalziel. Darren Hill could only parry the ball clear and Love was quick to react and tuck the ball into the net.
After this rather than close the game down and run the clock out the game opened up with both sides looking vulnerable in defence and Arbroath equalised with five minutes left when Hislop fired home after a free kick was chested into his path. After that Arbroath looked as if they could have went on to win but it was Stenhousemuir almost snatched all three points in stoppage time when Chris McLeod looked as if he would score with a header but failed to get any real power on it and Hill was able to clutch the ball with ease.
Stenhousemuir – McCluskey, Welsh, Currie [b56], Thom, McLeod, Molloy [b84], Stirling [b40][Love 64], I.Thomson, Dalziel, Bradley [Diack 64] and Motion.
Subs not used – Scullion, O’Reilly and Bennett
Arbroath – Hill, McMullan, McCulloch, Moyes, Rattray [b80], Lunan, Faulds [Scott 79], Gibson [b18], Hislop, Doris [b90] and McLean [ Moffat 83][t].
Subs not used – Bishop, Ross and Morrison
Referee – Anthony Law               
Assistants – Alasdair Ross and David Cockburn


Date Time League Season Full Time
January 16, 2010 3:00 pm SPFL Ladbrokes League 1 2009/2010 90'


Ochilview Park Stenhousemuir


Club1st Half2nd HalfGoalsOutcome