East Stirlingshire 5-2 Dumbarton

Ochilview, 15/11/08

Well. That’s the unbeaten away record comprehensively trashed, then.

We were never really in this game. I’ve not seen us play so poorly since the last away game against the same opposition. The Shire had had several chances to score before Gordon Lennon’s mistake was compounded by Mick O’Byrne and we were one down. Then Andy Rodgers conned the ref into giving a pen on the stroke of half-time. 999 times out of 1000 it wouldn’t have been given. 2-0.

A minute after half time the game was over, 3-0. At which point Jim Chapman decided to take off our right back and put on a striker. Badly though Gordon Lennon was playing – and he’s not a right back, no way – this frankly bizarre decision totally unbalanced the side and it was no surprise when Shire increased their lead, though neither goal actually came from that flank. But by this time we were in disarray and none of the defence, keeper included, was covering himself in glory.

It was like watching the Gerry McCabe era Sons. Yes, Rab, as bad as that.

The Shire are quite a big side; not uncommon in Div 3. Can we afford the luxury of two wee wide men, no matter how tricky, when our midfield seems to be being overrun – as it now has two weeks in a row? Last week Carcary wasn’t in the game. This week it was Stevie Murray’s turn to be ineffective.

Michael Moore didn’t make much of an impact, Michael Dunlop didn’t do much wrong but was caught up in the general malaise. The late goals were little consolation. Carcary created his out of nothing by collecting a bullet pass he had no right to and playing a couple of one-twos before finishing well. Ben Gordon’s header from a free kick – after a shocking tackle on Carcary by a Shire player (Bolochoweckyj?) who surely escaped a sending off only by being carried off – merely added a veneer of respectability.

I never thought I’d write this next sentence. We seemed to miss Paul Keegan as a link-up striker.

And another strange thought. Is there a point to Gary Wilson after all?

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  1. Alan Findlay

    Fair summary there Jack. One wee thing I’d like to add, in terms of balance, is that the Shire played very well, especially Donaldson (No 7) and Richardson (No 3).

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