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QUEEN OF THE SOUTH 2 : 1 GRETNA 25th July 2007
(Liam Atkin)
S1 - 2 S2
S2 - 61
S3 - 65 1
S4 - 85
Neither side tonight put out a starting eleven that would be a guaranteed first pick. Queens looked strong but Gretna had a less 'first team' look about themselves. For Queens the line-up saw trialist Liam Atkin start next to Neil McGowan at the heart of defence whilst both Paul Burns and John O'Neill got a start tonight.

Atkin's trial alongside McGowan lasted all of 60 seconds as McGowan indicated that he had a problem with his thigh and was replaced by Andy Aitken. The remainder of the half was reasonably even with the highlight for Queens being a half chance for John O'Neill as he raced in to attempt to reach a cross ball from a clever move between Gilmour and Dobbie.

Closest chance in the first half for O'Neill

The second half was much better fare with Queens playing some exceptional football that left Gretna chasing shadows. However the early threat came from Gretna as former Carlisle United player Brendan McGill fired into the side netting within six minutes of the restart. Queens gradually pressed their superiority into chances and Stephen Dobbie looked keen to strike as he made a quick turn and strike toward goal that had former Queens 'keeper David Mathieson looking back at his best as he pushed Dobbies effort over the bar.

Smiler pulls off a great save

With only the first fifteen minutes of the half gone first minute substitute Andy Aitken was himself replaced due to an injury following a clash with a Gretna player. As it turned out Aitken needed a couple of stitches to repair the damage. His replacement, Jim Lauchlan was foiled onto the pitch four minutes later as David Bingham replaced Brian Gilmour.

On seventy minutes Queens deservedly broke the deadlock as Eric Paton picked up a corner on the right and fired a ball into the box that Sean O'Connor got the slightest of touches on to divert the ball past Mathieson and into the net to give Queens a 1-0 lead.
The introduction of David Bingham had a positive effect on the side and it was 'Bingo' that almost increased the lead against his own side as he fired a snapshot over the bar following good work between the on loan striker and Sean O'Connor. It didn't take Bingham long to increase the home side's lead however as he stole through the middle of the visiting defence to meet a corner from Eric Paton to head past Mathieson and into the back of the net.

Bingham heads home

Queens, and in particular Stephen Dobbie cold have increased the lead a couple of times in th last few minutes but it was Gretna that somehow gained themselves a consolation goal, albeit in the final minute of the game.

This was a comfortable win for Queens that could have been by a larger margin was it not for some excellent saves by David Mathieson.

A tougher test awaits on Saturday when Carlisle United visit Palmerston.

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