Match Report

 Stirling Albion 0   Stenhousemuir 0

Stenhousemuir’s first match back in the Second Division was an eagerly awaited affair against one of the teams that will be pushing for promotion. This and the fact that it was only a short journey to Forthbank meant that a healthy travelling support of 165 turned out for the occasion.
Going into the game there were some fears about how the team would shape up without Chris McLeod who was suspended and whether this would bring about a change in formation and the upheaval that it could bring. In the end the trepidation was to be unfounded as Andy Brand stepped into the role and although he is better known as an attacking midfielder he settled down well to a more defensive mode with relative ease.
The Warriors showed that they were keen to attack and in the first minute of the game Scott Dalziel had an effort that just missed the target. It was a promising start though. Stirling responded instantly and Stewart Devine had an effort tipped round the post by Chris McCluskey. The keeper had a difficult time against St.Johnstone and was still lacking confidence at cross balls and was lucky not to be punished when he missed a Devine cross in the 13th minute. Stenhousemuir though were fairly dominant in midfield and Pat Scullion had a run and driven shot saved by Scott Christie in the 19th minute. It was then the turn of the Stirling keeper to look uncomfortable at crossballs as he fumbled the resultant corner and Craig O’Reilly was unlucky to see his first effort cleared off the line by Sean Roycroft and subsequent attempts blocked before Christie eventually gathered the ball.  Stenhousemuir continued to create the better chances in the first half and O’Reilly blasted over just after the half hour when Scott Dalziel was possibly better positioned if the pass came to him. On the other flank Kevin Motion played a dangerous ball across the face of the goal but there were no takers when a touch would have probably brought about a goal. Just before the end of the half Ross Forsyth made room for himself before firing in a half volley from the edge of the box that was saved by McCluskey, then the play moved swiftly to the other end where Christie denied O’Reilly again.
The second half saw Stenhousemuir  look for the first goal and an audacious lob by Motion from 40 yards almost did the trick but with Christie scrambling back it went just over the bar. A minute later, the 54th minute, the best chance so far fell to Willie Lyle at the back post  but from close range shot wide possibly as the result of the pass taking a slight deflection of Roycroft in getting to him.. Motion continued to threaten for Stenhousemuir but there was a major scare at the other end when McCluskey let the ball run across his path and Martin Grehan almost seized the opportunity and as the pair tangled in McCluskey’s desperation to get the ball there were strong shouts by the home support for a penalty. McCluskey proved to be a hero two minutes later when the ball was given away by a poor Stephen Thomson pass when the Warriors were down to ten men as Gary Thom was receiving treatment at the time. With the Warriors caught out David O’Brien had the change to put the home side ahead on his return to the club but McCluskey did well to stop his effort with a one handed save and the keeper was grateful to smother the ball following the subsequent scramble. Stirling were having their best spell of the game but Stenhousemuir held firm and as the game entered the closing stages neither team had pulled ahead. With five minutes left a Motion corner was just tipped away. The play was now moving from end to end and Grehan had an effort blocked by Thom that fell to Scott Dalziel who ran almost the length of the pitch before having a shot saved by Christie. With two minutes to go Stirling almost stole the points when John O’Neill headed over from close range. However the final whistle blew with the scores level and the Warriors pick up a deserved share of the spoils,
Stirling Albion – Christie, Feaks [Grehan 58], Forsyth, Roycroft, Graham, Robertson, Gibson, Murphy [O’Neill 65], McKenna, Mullen [O’Brien 58]and Devine.
Subs not used – Young and Hogarth.
Stenhousemuir – McCluskey, Lyle, S.Thomson, Thom, Smith, Molloy, Brand, Scullion, Dalziel, O’Reilly [Bradley 74] and Motion. Subs not used – Diack, I.Thomson, Love and Bennett  
Referee – John McKendrick       
Assistants – Barry Cook and Gavin Ross.


Date Time League Season Full Time
August 8, 2009 3:00 pm SPFL Ladbrokes League 1 2009/2010 90'


Forthbank, Stirling


Club1st Half2nd HalfGoalsOutcome