The only disappointment this afternoon was the end result as a practically full-strength Queens side played entertaining high tempo football only to be denied the points by an own-goal and a fluke.
The side lined up in a three-five-two formation with Andy Goram in goals, a back three from left to right of Aitken, Anderson and Thomson, the middle of the park was populated by McAlpine, Bowey, O'Neill, Weatherson and Neilson whilst up front were Lyle and Shields. It was certainly a side that could claim to be our strongest eleven.
The match itself started off brightly with both sides looking dangerous, in just five minutes the scoring was almost opened as a Peter Weatherson flick-on was met by Paul Shields at the far post but his header was just wide of target. Only two minutes later though and the ball was across the line, a deep cross from Joe McAlpine was brought down by John O'Neill who squared the ball to Derek Lyle in the middle of the goal who smashed it into the back of the net to make it 1-0 to the homesters.
Within three minutes though a wicked deflection off Derek Anderson from an effort that Goram looked to have well covered spun into the back of the net from the edge of the box, the visitors, and ex-Doonhamer trialist Ross Currie claiming the goal. Currie only lasted another five minutes as he pulled up whilst coming forward and was subsequently replaced. Queens broke from the centre of the park as Currie lost possession and a neat move down the right wing between Bowey and Lyle resulted in Lyle putting in a low hard cross that just eluded the toes of an attacker.
Queens were playing some good attacking football with Peter Weatherson and Steve Bowey particularly impressive in the middle of the park. On twenty four minutes a ball released by Weatherson sent Lyle down the wing and again the cross was low and hard, this time Bowser made contact but could only steer the ball wide of the post. Four minutes later and Paul Shields demonstrated his impressive strength as he forced his way through the heart of the Arbroath midfield and headed goalward, just as he was through the defence he elected to shoot instead of pass to the unmarked Bowey, unfortunately Shields effort was weak and the 'keeper collected.
Arbroath for their part were causing some problems, from a free-kick wide left following a 'foul' on Craig Feroz the ball was played out from a corner, the resulting set piece saw the Queens defence again static and an Arbroath forward allowed a header on goal, fortunately the ball cannoned back off the bar and away to safety.
Arbroath corner defended in depth
The half though really belonged to Queens and in the last few minutes their lead was almost increased as first a Robbie Neilson chip clipped the roof of the net as it dipped just over and then a Derek Lyle shot from a Paul Shields cross was well saved by Hinchcliffe at his near post.
HALF TIME 1-1
Queens came out in the second half intent on forcing home their advantage, a corner was won immediately and from the corner John O'Neill met the ball as he came rushing into the box but sent it over the bar. Nine minutes into the half and Queens looked like they would score as Peter Weatherson, showing great awareness, leapt to dummy an angled ball into the box, the recipient, Derek Lyle steadied himself and shot goalward, his effort though was very well blocked by Hinchcliffe and another chance went abegging.
Queens really were encamped in the visitors half and what happened next was a fluke, Andy Cargill spotted Andy Goram off his line and sent a speculative effort towards the goal from the centre-circle, unfortunately the ball was on target and the Goalie was stranded, 2-1 to the visitors, but no one could really believe it.
Three minutes later and the balance was restored as John O'Neill played in Peter Weatherson, Nellie's effort was again well blocked by Hinchcliffe but the Arbroath 'keeper could do nothing about Derek Lyle's follow up that almost burst the net. It looked like Queens could turn it back round again.
Queens continued to press and Arbroath showed very little up front, the chances came and went though and the Doonhamers were unable to unlock the 'Red Lichties' goal again.
Andy Aitken sends a header towards the goal
In summary Queens were the better side and really should have converted the chances that they made, having said that the performance was better than some of the recent home games and if the performances continue at that level then the wins will come.