Queen of the South 2 - 3 Arbroath07/08/1999


60 mins
63 mins

You wouldn't believe that these were the same two teams who served up a rather sterile display last weekend in the CIS League Cup. This game had almost everything, five goals, eight bookings, two sendings off and a penalty save. The only dissapointment was the result as Queen's lost out by the odd goal of those five.

Don't however be fooled into thinking that this was a dirty game, far from it, both teams attempted to play good passing football and for the most part achieved that aim, it was just over enthuthiasm after the summer break and a need to excercise some authority.

The game started much more brightly this week with Queens intent on producing a more attacking game, the enforced changes being the suspended Rowe and Boyle being replaced by Stewart and Weir respectively. The change at the back meaning that Stewart slotted in at right back and David Lilley moved into Geordie Rowes' central defensive berth. Mark Weir however was a straight replacement for Denis Boyle and immediately injected some pace down the left side.

Queens took command of midfield early on this week with Paul Harvey looking more and more the part as he created openings from the right and used Paul Stewart well on the overlap, the first goal however came down the right and it was Mark Weir who latched onto a Stevie Mallan pass and ran in on goal before unleashing a low hard drive across the keep and in at the far post. Things looked good then and Queens had a few more chances in the next few minutes.

Arbroath however are a well organised team and with Tam Bryce in midfield were soon re-grouping, it didn't take long before they provided an answer to Queens opener and in truth it was expected, a well flighted cross into the box was beautifully controlled on the chest of Crawford who laid it on for himself and crashed the ball into the net giving stand in keeper John Hillcoat no chance.

Buoyed by this Arbraoth maintained the pressure and were again rewarded only two minutes later when a disasterous mix up in the Queens defence allowed McGlashan to capitalise as both Hillcoat and Stewart fell over each other. Queens were naturally shell shocked by this and spent the next ten minutes on the back foot as Arbroath pressed to increase their lead.

Just as the comfort of half time was approaching and Queens looked to be gaining a bit more control over proceedings the evergreen Tam Bryce
was sent through on goal, last man David Lilley, out of position covering for missing colleagues attempted to clear, his desperate lunge just outside the box only suceeded in bringing down Tam Bryce and the referee made it clear to everyone than David was to make an eary exit, see right.[Lilley gets the clean water]

So half time 2-1 down and ten versus eleven men, not a good first firty five minutes of the season really, never mind always the second half.

The second half was indeed a different affair with Queens dominating from whistle to whistle, within seconds of the restart a number of chances were made and the ten men were showing great determination to get something out of the game. A goal was sure to come and come it did via Stevie Mallan who managed to break through the Lichties defence and slide the ball just past of the despairing Hinchcliffe in the Arbroath goal. Two all and hope was restored, for sixty seconds anyway, that's how long it took for Arbroath to restore their lead.

Alan Kerr who had been drafted into the centre of defence to replace Lilley attempted to let a harmless ball run out of play, he was shielding it to the goaline but did not count on an Arbroath forward nipping it off him and squaring it to Devine to cooly slot home.

[Devine has a long walk]Three two down and a man less, all was lost, well not quite, sixty seconds further on and those cards were coming out again, and it was goalscorer Devine himself who was being dismissed for a what the referee felt was a second bookable offence.

So Queens were level at least in terms of manpower and were looking quite like scoring as they made numerous chances that just went by or were well saved by keeper Hinchcliff. It was the keeper who caused the next dramatic moment as Stevie Mallan went off chasing a hopeful thhrough ball into the left hand side of the box, the keeper came out and committed himself, even though the ball was heading away from goal. Up they both went in an aerial challenge and down twisted Stevie after feeling the hard end of what in Rugby would be classed as a 'high' tackle. Card time again, but would it be red or would it be yellow, the crowd bayed for red, after all was it not a similar incidet to Tam Bryce being downed by David Lilley?, no only yellow, the ball was after all going away from goal and Stevie wouldn't have been clear on goal if he hadn't been brought down. A penalty would have to do.

No problem for Stevie then, just ten days ago we had witnessed him clinically finishing from the spot versus Aberdeen. Up he stepped, this time however the keeper guessed correctly, dived to his right and became a hero with the small band of Arbroath supporters in the East stand who had made the journey for the second week running.[Stevie's penalty attempt]

Queens didn't give up however and a few more chances were to come and go before the inevitable final whistle. The good points were the commitment and spirit shown by the team as a whole. The enforced changes to the defence both before and during the game seemed to unsettle the players which lead to probably two of the goals, on the whole though there are lots of positive signs, Mark Weir looked lively down the left, Paul Stewart effective at right back, Paul Harvey working creatively this week, Andy Aitken solid as usual and Stevie Mallan looking as hungry as ever up front.

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