Stenhousemuir v Rangers at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 29.10.13
Ramsdens Cup Semi-Final Attendance 2,338
Stenhousemuir 0 Rangers 1 [Daly 74]
The Warriors took a break from league duties to play this Ramsdens Cup Semi-final against Rangers at Ochilview. This was the first national semi-final to be played there since the Scottish Cup in 1903 when Rangers were also the visitors. This was also the first full televised game that has featured Stenhousemuir as the game was covered live by BBC Alba which was good for our supporters from afar who were unable to travel for a midweek game.
With Ross McMillan returning after injury Ross Smith dropped to the bench. Sean Lynch also came in as Sean Higgins was pushed up into the solitary attacker as John Gemmell was suspended. Stenhousemuir were obviously mindful of the last encounter between the teams when they met in the league at Ibrox and suffered an 8-0 drubbing and set up more defensively than usual going for a 4-5-1 formation. This had the desired effect for most of the game though they were obviously going to have a few scares along the way. The first was in the second moment when an Ian Black free kick caused Chris Smith problems as he struggled to grasp the greasy ball and Lee McCulloch was unable to seize the chance before Ross McMillan cleared. The Warriors responded with a passing move that eventually fizzled out when the ball ballooned up for an easy capture by Cammy Bell. There was a real escape for Stenhousemuir in the 10th minute when the ball found its way to Jon Daly after a slip by Eddie Malone allowed Black to thread the ball through and Daly appeared to get his standing foot caught by Kevin McKinlay. Just after this the Warriors suffered a blow as Bryan Hodge had to leave the field after picking up a knock. He was replaced by Brown Ferguson who had lacked game time recently but like the rest of the team put up sterling service in this game.
They were still settling down when Rangers had another decent chance when an Arnold Peralta corner was headed wide by Bilel Mohsni who should have done better. This was the last real opening for Rangers until the 35th minute when a Peralta thunderbolt from 25 yards cannoned off the bar and a minute later it was Nicky Law who was to be denied by the woodwork when his strike from 20 yards also hit the bar. The fact that Rangers were having to shoot from distance in the first half showed that Stenhousemuir were managing to stay disciplined and although they lacked a goal threat themselves with only a poorly executed Sean Higgins free kick to show at the other end, it was clear who would have been the happier team at the interval.
Nevertheless they would have realised that Rangers have gained a reputation this season for steamrolling the opposition in the second half of games so far and this would have been a concern. Most people expected Stenhousemuir to try and sit back and try and soak up the pressure but they had other ideas and were more positive in their outlook. Indeed they had a claim for a penalty in the 47th minute when a David Rowson shot struck Mohsni possibly on the hand but the referee waived away the appeals. In the 50th minute Brown Ferguson called Bell into action for the first time when he had to save a curling effort. The Warriors were growing more confident but there was a warning that they could not relax when Smith had to save from Daly in the 57th minute when the ball was given away cheaply. The best move of the game happened in the 62nd minute when the Rangers defence was carved open and Ferguson appeared on the right and crossed into the middle for Darren Smith who only had to hit the ball straight from 6 yards out but managed to screw the ball wide of the open goal. Rangers Daly was denied two minutes later by a great Chris Smith stop but the keeper was eventually beaten in the 74th minute when he was caught in no mans land coming out for a long ball by Mohsni and Daly got there first to head home. To Stenhousemuir’s credit they kept going and although Lee McCulloch struck the bar with a header in the 88th minute there was no further scoring before the final whistle.
This was a hard fought game and Rangers were slowing the game down towards the end grateful to run the clock down which is testament to how well Stenhousemuir played.
Stenhousemuir – C.Smith, Devlin, McKinlay , Malone, McMillan, Hodge [Ferguson 14], Dickson, Rowson [b 45], Higgins [Douglas 84], Lynch and D.Smith. Subs not used – R.Smith, McNeil and Shaw.
Rangers – Bell, Foster, Mohsni [b, Peralta [b45] [Templeton 65], Wallace, McCulloch, Clark [Little 73], Black, Daly, MacLeod and Law. Subs not used – Faure, Hutton and Simonsen.
Referee – Bobby Madden Assistants – David McGeachie and Sean Carr Fourth Official – Barry Cook
|October 29, 2013||7:35 pm||Petrofac Training Cup||2013/2014||90'|
|Ochilview Park Stenhousemuir|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|