|2005/06 Season Review
||A serialised account of our season by our man who has been at every match home and away - Ewan Lithgow
|Part Two - August|
In fact the season started on the final Saturday of July with a Bells Cup game at home to Albion Rovers. The same side had embarrassingly knocked us out of the CIS Cup one year earlier but there was to be no such shock this time as Queens confidently put their lower division opponents to the sword. There was no sign of the long depressing run ahead as goals from Stuart Lovell, Derek Lyle, David McNiven and Brian McLaughlin led to a comfortable 4-0 win.
The league season started in a completely different manner at Perth. The defence for some reason played like they'd never met each other before and Keystone Cops defending led to a real hammering. It was one of those "could go wrong, did go wrong" days. First a terrible error from Lovell let in Steven Milne to break the deadlock and before half time a misunderstanding between Reid and Carr had allowed Dobbie to set up Milne for his second. It got no better in the second period. Gary Wood got himself sent off three minutes in whilst Jim Thomson, on for the injured Brian Reid at the interval, gave away a third goal to Ryan Stevenson. Just for good measure Mark Campbell powered in a 4th goal and also collided with Jim Thomson in the incident, which saw JT go off requiring stitches. It wouldn't be the last time that proved necessary this season!
As if the week wasn't already bad enough it got worse as we crashed out of the CIS Cup at Stirling Albion despite being a seeded team in the competition. Two early goals from Paddy Connolly, again capitalising on comedy defending were enough to see the home side through despite McNiven getting a goal back. In truth, though we played poorly on the night, Albion were more than a little fortunate to hold on but the signs were already there that the season was in danger of going pear shaped.
It was important to get momentum moving and put the first points on the board at home to Brechin City next up but in the end a sterling display from visiting keeper Craig Nelson meant that only one point was gained and not the three necessary.
An outstanding display from Nelson held Queens at bay
The news only got grimmer as the trip to Dundee on league business for the first time in a long time yielded only a 3-1 defeat and a red card for Derek Lyle. We were again undone by an inability to defend set pieces as Bobby Mann, Simon Lynch and Ian Anderson all scored from free kicks and corners. In between the second and third goals Derek Lyle had pulled a goal back when he tapped in English's cross, which had been flicked beyond the keeper by McNiven. However, in an ill-tempered match Lyle was sent off for a head butt on Tom Hutchinson later on.
If things weren't already bad enough they got worse when Clyde scrambled to a 1-0 win over us at Broadwood. The scorer needless to say was Alex Williams, who had a failed loan spell at Palmerston last season, though he knew little about it. His initial shot was cleared off the line but cannoned back into the net of his knee.
The month ended in midweek with Queens crashing out of a second cup competition. This time the home defeat to St Mirren in the Bell Cup was maybe no great surprise (the Buddies would go on to win the trophy and the league) but it was disappointing none the less. Mark Corcoran took advantage of confusion again in the defence to beat the offside trap and score the first and, although Paul Burns tapped home an equaliser when Chris Smith spilled Gibson's free kick, Hugh Murray won it for the visitors with a low strike from distance two minutes later.
It could not then have been said to be a happy start to the campaign. Out of both cups already and with just one point from four league matches, only one goal to show for it and two red cards for good measure. It couldn't get any worse could it?
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