Brechin City 1 Dunfermline 6Saturday, 8th Aug 2015
Ladbrokes League One: same starting eleven; El Bakhtaoui (8), Moffat (23) 0-2; Cardle (31) 0-3; El Bakhtaoui (44) 0-4; Wallace (80) 0-5; Weatherston (89) 1-5; Falkingham (90) 1-6.
The opening day of the League One campaign proved to be an enjoyable one for Allan Johnston, his players and Pars fans,. Six goals against a side that they failed to beat in four tries last season made to road to Dundee and then down the A90 a very strange, but pleasing experience
After impressive back to back wins using the same starting eleven, manager Allan Johnston went with the same again. Jason Talbot returning from suspension found himself on the bench.
Darren Dods was seeking his first competitive win as Brechin City manager following 3-0 and 2-0 reversals against Peterhead and Ayr United. He made two changes from the side defeated at Somerset Park the previous Saturday in the Scottish League Cup - Craig Molloy and Craig Johnston came in to replace Gary Fusco and Jamie Montgomery. Dods was missing from the bench through suspension.
There was a sizeable travelling support in front of the Brechin hedge and in the away stand. The bright sunshine that kissed the warm up period disappeared by kick off but by summer of 2015 standards was a lovely afternoon. The Pars kicked off with their supporters in the stand behind them and Michael Moffat was picked out inside the opposition box within 15 seconds but he was closed out by the home defence.
Brechin then won a free kick on the edge of the Pars box within two minutes but former Pars player Robert Thomson drove into the five man wall and although City got in a follow up the defence blocked that too.
In sixth minute an Andy Geggan shot from 35 yards was deflected behind for the first corner of the afternoon but Joe Cardle's delivery went long. Then Faissal El Bakhtaoui tested Graeme Smith with an effort from 25 yards which he dropped to his knees to gather. In eight minutes the Pars striker had better luck. EL BAKHTAOUI's shot was parried by the keeper but he followed up to net his fifth goal of the season. 0-1
The goalscorer next put in a really good cross, looking up and picking out Moffat who was immediately surrounded by red shirts but he laid the ball back for Michael Paton whose effort went wide right. Ben Richards-Everton sent in a great ball from the right that Cardle met at the far post but he could only turn it back and a defender stepped in first to clear.
Geggan tried another shot from distance but the keeper held while at the other end Sean Murdoch was kept deployed holding two separate efforts from City. In 18 minutes a Craig Johnston free kick travelled through the Pars box and out beyond the right goalpost.
Dunfermline looked comfortably in control, their passing was quick and Cardle in particular fought away to try and get in crosses. Midway through the first half his perseverance paid off. In front of goal Ross Parry tried to head clear Cardle's cross but merely teed up MOFFAT who then headed past Smith from close range. 0-2
The Fifers continued to press, Cardle had a shot blocked and Lewis Martin drove his attempt into a defender. Then in 31 minutes CARDLE was allowed space in his favourite shooting position just outside the box and he zipped a right footed shot into the top corner. 0-3
Under more pressure Brechin right back Paul McLean stopped a cross with his hand and Cardle rifled a shot on target from 25 yards that Smith held impressively. At the other end Callum Fordyce brought down the tricky Johnston but the free kick was powered through the Pars box to no effect.
In 39 minutes Geggan sprayed a pass out right for Williamson and he made a run cutting in from the right but forced on to his left foot his shot was easily dealt with by Smith. The fourth Dunfermline goal came from a simple cross from the boot of Paton that picked out EL BAKHTAOUI and he rose unchallenged to head past Smith 0-4.
Quite a first half from the visitors!
Half time: Brechin City 0 Dunfermline 4
Jason Talbot replaced the injured Callum Fordyce for the restart and the sub was immediately deployed puttiing off McLean sufficiently for the full back's shot from 15 yards soaring over the bar and out of the ground. Two minutes in Paton released a low stinging shot that Smith saved and got the break that let his defence clear before Moffat could snap up the chance.
On the hour Ryan Wallace came on to replace Shaun Byrne and the sub had a shot with virtually his involvement. El Bakhtaoui's shot came back to the sub and then Faiss got a bite at the rebound but blasted well over the top.
At the other end Murdoch did well to stretch for an Andy Jackson cross and Williamson mopped up. Dunfermline continued to pass the ball around accurately and confidently. Perry narrowly avoided scoring an own goal in 65 minutes and when Cardle's corner was delivered from the right Geggan's header cleared the crossbar.
Pars were getting time on the ball in the Brechin box, worrying the home dugout but Moffat's shot was squeezed out on the left. Josh Falkingham came on for Faissal El Bakhtaoui with 69 minutes gone. Within the same minute Cardle lobbed over a ball from the right that Moffat met at the near post but sent it outside the upright.
Murdoch dived to his right to save from sub David Weatherston and then in 72 minutes pulled off a fine save to deny Jackson. Next minute City captain Craig Molloy sent a wonderful strike destined for the top left corner of the Fifers net but Murdoch played Superman to turn the ball around his post.
Brechin continued to enjoy more possession and the home fans had hopes of a consolation goal but in 80 minutes it was Dunfermline who were to score again. Cardle fed WALLACE and he took the chance superbly with a fine low finish into the far corner of the net. 0-5
In 85 minutes first Cardle and then Wallace had net bound shots headed off the line by Kevin Buchan! Two minutes later Talbot sustained a knock as he ran in to McLean and then Molloy piled into the back of him. The English defender was tough enough to take it and play resumed.
Brechin did get that consolation when WEATHERSTON headed in a Thomson cross in 89 minutes but their joy was short lived as FALKINGHAM received the ball from the right with Wallace stepping over the pass. Josh rolled the ball into the bottom right to complete the rout at 6-1
It was the Pars first league success at Glebe Park since January 1994 but it will be a memorable one. The best opening league result since Dickson twice, Rowan, Melrose twice and Sweeney scored in the 6-0 win over Motherwell on 19th August 1959.
SUBS NOT USED: Gary Fusco, Jonathan Tiffoney, Jamie Montgomery, Paddy O'Neil (GK).
SCORERS: Weatherston (89)
YELLOW CARD: Thomson (4)
DUNFERMLINE: Sean Murdoch; Ryan Williamson, Callum Fordyce (c)(Jason Talbot HT), Ben Richards-Everton, Lewis Martin; Michael Paton, Shaun Byrne (Ryan Wallace 60), Andy Geggan, Joe Cardle; Michael Moffat, Faissal El Bakhtaoui (Josh Falkingham 69).
SUBS NOT USED: David Hopkirk, Lewis Spence, John Potter, David Hutton (GK).
SCORERS: El Bakhtaoui (8, 44), Moffat (23), Cardle (31), Wallace (80), Falkingham (90)
REFEREE: John McKendrick
WEATHER: Sunny 19ºC
NEXT MATCH: Ladbrokes League One: (home) v Cowdenbeath
Saturday 15th August 2015, kick off 3.00pm at East End Park.
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Brechin 1-6 Dunfermline
Sat, 8th Aug 2015
Allan Johnston post Brechin
Sat, 8th Aug 2015
Josh Falkingham post Brechin
Sat, 8th Aug 2015
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Preview Brechin CitySaturday, 8th Aug 2015
Pars in search of their first league success at Glebe Park since January 1994
The last time the Pars travelled to Brechin nothing other than a win would do if they wish to keep their slim hopes of a play off place alive. A 3-0 defeat to City killed off those slim hopes but contrast that to the mood this time around when Allan Johnston's team and supporters travel there after two confidence building victories in the Petrofac and Scottish League Cups.
There has now been 45 league matches between them but the last victory there on league business remains on 4th January 1994.
The Fifers have won 29, Brechin City 8 and 8 matches have been drawn. The best Pars result in Brechin was a 6-1 win in 1979 courtesy of a Mike Leonard hat trick and goals from Jimmy Mullin, Kevin Hegarty, and Walter Borthwick.
Milestones v Brechin City (away)
These two met in the opening league fixture of last season as well when the Pars were held to a disappointing goalless draw. The second game last season was again at East End but City won that February night by the only goal of the game scored by Alan Trouten in 73rd minute. When the teams met a week later in Angus, Josh Falkingham put the visitors ahead within the first minute only for Paul McLean to equalise early in the second half. The 1-1 draw extended Brechin's run to16 league games undefeated and meant that they were undefeated against the Fifers in season 2014-15.
|Last twelve meetings|
|League One||Brechin City||0-3||Dunfermline||18/04/15|
|League One||Brechin City||1-1||Dunfermline||02/03/15|
|League One||Dunfermline||0-1||Brechin City||24/02/15|
|League One||Dunfermline||0-0||Brechin City||09/08/14|
|League One||Dunfermline||2-1||Brechin City||29/03/14|
|League One||Brechin City||3-2||Dunfermline||25/01/14|
|League One||Dunfermline||3-1||Brechin City||23/11/13|
|League One||Brechin City||1-1||Dunfermline||14/09/13|
|First Division||Dunfermline||2-1||Brechin City||30/04/94|
|First Division||Brechin City||0-1||Dunfermline||04/01/94|
|First Division||Dunfermline||4-0||Brechin City||30/10/93|
|First Division||Brechin City||1-0||Dunfermline||21/08/93|
Last Saturday Ayr United knocked Brechin City out of the Scottish League Cup at Somerset Park with defender Gerry McLauchlan scoring against his former club. Former Par Paddy Boyle fired into the top corner after 64 minutes to confine Brechin to a second straight cup tie loss.
Brechin went out of the Petrofac Training Cup losing 3-0 at home to Peterhead. In contrast the Pars breezed past Arbroath 4-1 and Cowdenbeath 5-1.
|Form this season -|
|Ayr United (A)||
|Peterhead (H)||L||0-3||Arbroath (A)||W||4-1|
|Dundee (H)||W||1-0||Hibs (H)||L||1-2|
|Formartine United (H)||W||5-3||Queens Park (A)||W||5-2|
|Deveronvale (H)||W||4-1||Livingston (A)||D||0-0|
|Raith Rovers (A)||P-P||Berwick Rangers (A)||
Last Time Out
DUNFERMLINE (v Cowdenbeath): Sean Murdoch; Ryan Williamson, Callum Fordyce (c), B Richards-Everton, Lewis Martin; Michael Paton, Shaun Byrne (Josh Falkingham 79), Andy Geggan, Joe Cardle (David Hopkirk 77); Michael Moffat (Ryan Wallace 66), Faissal El Bakhtaoui
SUBS NOT USED: David Hutton (GK), Lewis Spence, James Thomas, John Potter.
BRECHIN CITY (v Ayr United): Graeme Smith; Paul McLean, Darren McCormack, Ross Perry, Kevin Buchan; Gary Fusco (Craig Molloy 66), Euan Smith (David Weatherston 82), James Dale, Jamie Montgomery (Craig Johnston 46), Andy Jackson, Robert Thomson.
SUBS NOT USED: Darren Dods, Patrick O'Neil (GK).
Referee will be John McKendrick.
Opposition: Since Last Season
It has been a summer of upheaval at Glebe Park, following the departure of manager Ray McKinnon to Raith Rovers and departure of key players such as Alan Trouten and Gerry McLauchlan to Ayr United. McKinnion took his management team with him, coaches Grant Johnson and Darren Taylor also moving to the Rovers.
After careful consideration of the wide range of applications Brechin appointed former Hibs, St Johnstone Inverness, Dundee United, Falkirk and Forfar defender Darren Dods as their new manager. On taking over Dods said:-
"I welcome the opportunity to come and manage Brechin City FC. I have experienced what Brechin City has to offer in our battles over the past two seasons. I greatly look forward to meeting and working with the players who have already demonstrated their commitment to the Club as we look to build a squad for the new season. Division One is a great league to play in and I am sure it will be a great league to also manage in, I am clear on our objectives as we look to be challenging amongst the best of the part time teams in Scotland. I thank the Club for showing faith in me as a young manager and I and I look to repay that faith through hard work and endeavour."
The Brechin new manager then appointed former City player Lee Bailey as his assistant manager. Lee joined Brechin City in 1999 on loan from Queen of the South having previously played for Hibs and Livingston. He moved from coaching at the Fife Football Performance Academy.
Amongst new Brechin player-manager Darren Dods signings are former United full-back Jonathan Tiffoney, centre-back Ross Perry and veteran striker Dene Shields, who has returned to Scottish football after a spell in Malta.
Central defender Perry (25) swaps League Two in England to return to Scotland in Ladbrokes League One having been with Northampton Town. Prior to this Ross spent much of the early part of his career with Rangers, followed by short spells at Falkirk and Raith Rovers as he sought to recover from serious ankle ligament injury which kept him sidelined for the entire 2013/14 season. He has also enjoyed international experience, representing Scotland at both U/19 and U/21 levels.
Tiffoney (24) is a right sided defender who has featured in a number of the recent pre-season friendlies and has already excited many of the City supporters with his eagerness to break forward. “Tiff” has considerable experience at this level having played for Ayr United and, most recently, Alloa Athletic.
Darren Dods also added forward Kevin Buchan (20, Dundee, Peterhead, Arbroath), midfielder James Dale (21, Forfar) and Jamie Montgomery (19, Forward, Dundee United). David Weatherston brought the complement of registered players to 18. The 28 year forward has previously turned out for Queens Park, St Johnstone, Queen of the South, Falkirk, Stirling Albion and Alloa Athletic.