Reports from matches this season go to the fixtures section and click on the report linked to the match you want to read about. Alternatively for earlier seasons go to the fixtures section of the archive for the relevant year.
RAITH ROVERS 1 : 2 QUEEN OF THE SOUTH 25th September 2004
Rating: 7.10
Rating: 6.89
Rating: 6.23
Rating: 6.68
Rating: 7.73
Rating: 6.39
Rating: 6.31
Rating: 6.61
Rating: 6.61
Rating: 6.26
Rating: 6.89
S1 - 62
Rating: 5.86
S2 - 87
Members of the Internet Fan Club can award players marks out of ten for their performance today. The player with the most points awarded in the two days following a match will be the IFC Man of the Match. All of the points will then be added to a running total for each player and the results published in the mom League Table.

Name or IFC No.
The 100% away league record was preserved today and a banana skin avoided as Queens edged past Raith in a nervous performance that never carried anywhere near the quality of last week's win at Partick. Iain Scott made two changes to the line up that starred at Firhill. David Craig was out through injury and Tommy English had to drop back to fill the left back role. That left a gap in midfield for returning skipper Steve Bowey to slot back in following his recent injury. In addition, David Bagan returned to the starting line up at the expense of Brian McColligan who took over his place on the bench. Also on the bench was Emilio Jaconelli after his recent absence. On the opposite bench was a familiar face in Joe McAlpine, somehow not considered good enough to start for what is a very poor Rovers side. The home side came into the game in somewhat chaotic fashion with assistant manager John Hollins having departed yesterday citing an inability to work with Claude Anelka and Anelka himself apparently "stepping upstairs" (he watched the game from the directors box). That meant Rovers getting special dispensation from Brechin City for centre half Shaun Dennis to take over as manager for the day. Is this the first time a team as been managed by a player from another team?

Dennis got the perfect start to his managerial career though as Queens saw fit to hand them the lead inside the opening five minutes. It came from a right sided corner needlessly conceded. Gary Wood somehow fell over in the box and, as Brian Reid went to head the flighted cross away, he fell over the prone Wood leaving a free back post header across the face of goal and Herve Ebanda was left with the simple task of knocking home from five yards.

Reid and Wood are grounded as Ebanda waits to pounce for the Raith goal
So, for the second game running, Queens were faced with overcoming an early deficit on their travels and they set about it in somewhat hesitant fashion. Their first effort on goal arrived via a half-volley from Brian Reid of all people. Berthelot saved comfortably enough though and he did the same on 14 minutes from McNiven's 25 yard free kick. On 20 minutes the equaliser really should have arrived. Brian McLaughlin's clever ball over the top saw Bowey spring the offside trap and bear down on goal. He lobbed the ball over Berthelot but across the face of goal. McNiven couldn't quite reach it but Burns at the back post did and rifled goalward only to see a defender charging back to the line to head away over his own bar. The game's first controversial incident was in 34 minutes when Eric Paton swung in a great cross from the right side that found Paul Burns all alone about ten yards out. He hammered the ball beyond Berthelot but again it was blocked on the line by a defender. Whether it was his thigh or his hand that blocked it is another question? Certainly the normally placid Burns was certain it should have been a penalty and appealed vehemently to referee Mr Murray in vain.

Midfield action
Rovers finally appeared at the Queens end again on 37 minutes and again it was a corner that caused the problem. It was partially cleared but when crossed back the ball bounced awkwardly at Colin Scott's feet and he spilled the ball out. Fortunately Jim Thomson was on hand to hammer the ball away. Normal service was soon resumed though and on 44 minutes the lively Bowey was again slipped in on goal but Berthelot blocked with his legs. The equaliser was not delayed long though as in the aftermath a poor cross bounced up awkwardly and struck a defender on the arm as he tried to bring it away. Mr Murray awarded a free kick on the very edge of the box and whilst the bounce was unfortunate there could be little argument that it was the correct decision. Up stepped Tommy English to hammer the ball home off the foot of the left corner post and end the half on a high.

On 52 minutes the home side brought Lloyd Young on for Jack Perry and the change almost paid immediate dividends when the youngster shot goalward only to see David Bagan kick the ball off the line. A few minutes later Rovers brought John Martin on for Ebanda and Iain Scott replaced Paton with Brian McColligan. That meant Burns switching wings again and Bowey moving to the left side of midfield as Queens attempted to tighten their grip on midfield and quieten the excellent Paquito who forced a decent save from Scott shortly afterward. The change however paid quick dividends on 69 minutes. Paul Burns collected a crossfield ball and moved down the right and infield before playing a ball towards McLaughlin in the box. "Wee Eddie's" clever backheel sent the whole home defence the wrong way and gave the in-rushing Steve Bowey a clear sight of goal. This time as Berthelot advanced his chip was perfectly placed over the keeper and under the bar to give his side the lead.

Joe McAlpine got a round of applause from both sets of fans when he made his appearance off the bench on 80 minutes in relief of Bartholeme and a minute later Raith should have equalised when Jim Thomson over-balanced going for a header and left Sacko with a clear run on goal. Colin Scott though denied an equaliser with a brilliant save, plunging to his left low down. On 86 minutes Queens made a second change when Jaconelli replaced McNiven but a minute later came the game's second controversial incident. Sacko collapsed like the proverbial "sacko" spuds in the box if you'll pardon the pun but failed to impress either me or, more importantly, Mr Murray who waved play on. The home support and players though were incensed and surrounded the referee resulting in a lecture for John Martin and a booking for Ryan Maxwell for his dissent to the linesman. However, there was little further goalmouth action and Queens held out comfortably enough to record their fourth successive away league win.

With the three sides above all drawing the gap has been closed a little and table toppers St Mirren come to Palmerston next week when we will look to remove the lack of a home win this season from our record.

Ewan Lithgow

Photo's by David Gow

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