Dunfermline Athletic

Fixtures : 2021-2022 : Arbroath

Sat, 5th Mar 2022 Kick Off: 15:00

Arbroath 1 Dunfermline 0

Saturday, 5th Mar 2022

cinch Championship: Aaron Comrie and Kevin O’Hara start in place of Matty Todd and Lewis McCann. David Gold (9) 1-0

Arbroath demonstrated their title credentials with a narrow win against Dunfermline, who struck the frame of the goal three times, but couldn’t score.

Dunfermline Athletic made the trip to Gayfield Park to take on league leaders, Arbroath. The Fifers in ninth place badly needed a win and three points and they were out to stop a team that had beaten them three times this season.

Manager John Hughes had Aaron Comrie back from suspension so Matty Todd dropped to the bench and Kevin O’Hara, who scored two goals in the first 12 minutes in the clubs’ first meeting in Angus earlier this season was preferred to Lewis McCann.

For Arbroath Dick Campbell was without the services of Craig Wighton, on loan to Arbroath from Dunfermline. David Gold coming into the Arbroath was the only change.

For once, the North Sea was relatively calm, the Bell Rock Lighthouse could just about be made out to the east, and at 10 knots the wind could be described as a “gentle breeze”.  On what was thus a beautiful day for football, Graham Dorrans won the toss and opted to play towards his own fans in the North End.

Indeed, it was underfoot conditions that seemed to me more of an issue early on, with several players slipping, but the Pars were first to find their feet and after Gaston in the home goal had dealt competently with an early centre from Steven Lawless, the Pars spurned two glorious opportunities to take the lead, Lawless again being the creator.  

First, his ball behind the right back found Ryan Dow and after Derek Gaston had saved from close range, it seemed Dorrans simply had to score with the keeper still prone, but after taking a touch the Pars’ skipper was stunned to see Little clear his shot off the line.

The visitors were still digesting this set-back when the home team scored what was to prove to be the only goal of the game – Liam Henderson advanced down the left and GOLD timed his run from midfield to collect the cut-back and crash it into the net.  1-0 Arbroath

Ironically Gold might not have been playing but for the agreement which meant on-loan Craig Wighton had to miss out.  Play became scrappy as the Pars tried to get back into the game.  Dorrans dropped deeper in search of the ball and play became pedestrian and ponderous.  

Dow was the Pars’ main threat but Arbroath were wise to this and limited his options when he did get the ball.  However, he did get a shot away midway through the half when he cut inside, but Gaston saved easily.  Nor were the Pars getting the rub of the green – a coming together in the box saw the keeper on the deck and the ball loose, but with Dow looking for a penalty Gaston was able to grab the ball.

O’Hara was clearly under instructions to test the off-side trap; this led only to an assistant’s flag most of the time, but in 39 minutes he aborted his run allowing Lawless to run through instead and although his shot beat the keeper, it grazed the outside of the far post.  It was the other post that came to the home team’s rescue four minutes before the break when a corner was recycled back to Dorrans thence to Dow whose cutback was well met by O’Hara, only to see his shot crash against the upright and out.

Half time:  Arbroath 1 Dunfermline 0

Arbroath made a defensive change at the break, bringing on former Par Jason Thomson at right back, with Scott Stewart pushing forward, and the dangerous Bobby Linn being withdrawn.  

Dunfermline began to enjoy the bulk of possession but just couldn’t carve out any chances.  Arbroath were happy to soak up the pressure, confident in their ability to defend, patiently waiting for their turn, which inevitably came.

Comrie had to be alert to put in a saving challenge just before the hour mark and two minutes later Little headed over from a free-kick.  Jakub Stolarczyk hadn’t had too much to do but proved his worth with a fine save when a shot took a late deflection.

The Pars fans were baying for changes and were pleased when Dom Thomas stripped to come on.  The busy Pybus had become slightly inhibited in his play after a first half booking, and Dow had become less effect after Arbroath’s half-time change, but instead it was Comrie who gave way as the Pars moved to three at the back.  

Dunfermline took a few minutes to settle into the new formation allowing a couple of half chances – Stewart was wide from long range and the division’s leading scorer Michael McKenna, who had been having a quiet afternoon, got into a good position in 66 minutes but sclaffed his shot.  Then it was Coll Donaldson to the Pars rescue as he made a last-ditch challenge as the Pars were again caught out in midfield.

Desperate times call for desperate measures and with eight minutes left we saw a remarkable quadruple substitution from the visitors.  Off went Ambrose, Dow, Dorrans and Pybus; on came Martin and Breen to be part of a back three (allowing Edwards to push forward), Polworth (making his debut) and McCann who moved up front.   

In the final minute of normal time McCann got his head to Polworth’s long ball from deep, but Gaston got to the ball just ahead of the lurking O’Hara. A minute later Breen found McCann on the left, the Northern Irish under-21 internationalist cut inside and unleashed a shot that Lawless turned on to the bar, summing up the Pars’ performance – close, but not close enough.

Results elsewhere with Queen of the South defeating Morton 3-0 and Ayr United winning 4-0 at Stark’s Park, meant the Pars slip to the bottom of the division and with their position looking particularly perilous, their luck needs to change soon.

ARBROATH: Derek Gaston: Scott Stewart, Ricki Little, Thomas O’Brien (c), Colin Hamilton: Chris Hamilton: Bobby Linn (Jason Thomson HT), Michael McKenna, Liam Henderson (Dale Hilson 73), David Gold (James Craigen 70), Jack Hamilton (Luke Donnelly 82).
SUBS NOT USED: Nicky Low, Sam Ford, Michael Bakare, Calum Antell (GK)
SCORERS: Gold (9)
YELLOW CARD: O`Brien (70), McKenna (87)

DUNFERMLINE: Jakub Stolarczyk: Aaron Comrie (Dom Thomas 63), Coll Donaldson, Efe Ambrose (Rhys Breen 82), Josh Edwards: Dan Pybus (Lewis Martin 82), Joe Chalmers: Steven Lawless, Graham Dorrans (c))(Lewis McCann 82), Ryan Dow (Liam Polworth 82), Kevin O’Hara
SUBS NOT USED: Nikolay Todorov, Paul Allan, Matty Todd, Neil Alexander (GK)
YELLOW CARD: Pybus (29)

REFEREE: Chris Graham

NEXT MATCH: cinch Championship (away) v Hamilton Academical, Saturday 12th March 2022, kick off 3.00pm at New Douglas Park

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    Sat, 5th Mar 2022

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Preview Arbroath

Saturday, 5th Mar 2022

cinch Championship (away) v Arbroath, Saturday 5th March 2022, kick off 3.00pm at Gayfield Park

The next opportunity for the Pars to pick up three league points comes on Saturday in the away fixture against top of the table Arbroath. Dick Campbell’s side were held to a draw at home to Partick Thistle on Tuesday night but they remain undefeated in 12 home league games since losing to Caley Thistle on the opening day of the Championship season.

The Angus side have the upper hand in their home games, 23 wins to the Pars 15 with 11 drawn. They have also won all three of their previous matches against Dunfermline this season scoring ten goals and conceding just two.

Milestones Arbroath (away)

Last Victory | 28/11/20 | 3-1 | Betfred Cup

Last Defeat | 30/10/21 | 2-4 | Championship

Best Victory | 14/09/57 | 5-0 | Division Two

Best Victory | 09/08/52 | 5-0 | League Cup

Worst Defeat | 03/10/25 | 0-5 | Division Two

Worst Defeat | 23/01/54 | 0-5 | Division B

Last Goalless Draw | 04/03/20 | 0-0 | Championship

First Meeting | 04/02/22 | 0-0| Division Two

Last Meeting at Gayfield

Championship Saturday 30th October 2021

Arbroath 4-2 Dunfermline
Sat, 30th Oct 2021

Two early Kevin O’Hara goals fired the visitors into a two goal lead within 12 minutes. The first was from a 25 yard free kick from Dom Thomas on the left into the opposition box. Gašpuitis attacked the ball but could not get a foot to it however Kevin O’HARA was on hand to crash the ball home from outside the right goalpost. 0-1

Just five minutes later a clearance up the park from Owain Fôn Williams was headed down by O’Brien, under challenge from Todorov, and O’HARA evaded the offside trap to lock on to it, making ground before smashing the ball past the advancing keeper for his seventh goal of the season. 0-2

Just three minutes later Arbroath got a goal back from a corner from the right. McKenna sent the ball deep where skipper O’BRIEN was able to chest it down and drill the ball home through Fôn Williams from the far side of the box. 1-2

The sides were level when McKenna’s 37th minute free kick from the left was headed home at the back post by Joel NOUBLE. 2-2

Thirteen minutes from the end O’Brien launched the ball from his own half deep down the left wing. Nouble attempted to control it but the ball travelled to the 36 year old Arbroath favourite Bobby LINN who with a sweeping a shot from 25 yards out curled it in at the far post, 3-2.

In 85 minutes the home side were awarded a penalty in the soft category. Linn ran into Dow on the edge of the box and referee Peter Stuart pointed to the spot. Michael McKENNA converted in off the left upright. 4-2.

ARBROATH: Derek Gaston: Colin Hamilton, Ricki Little, Thomas O’Brien, Michael McKenna, Scott Stewart, Luke Donnelly (Bobby Linn 68), Harrison Clark (James Craigen 87), Joel Nouble, Chris Hamilton, Anton Dowds (Dale Hilson 68).
SUBS NOT USED: David Gold, Gavin Swankie, Liam Henderson, Calum Antell (GK)

DUNFERMLINE: Owain Fôn Williams (c): Aaron Comrie, Rhys Breen, Vytas Gašpuitis, Josh Edwards: Dom Thomas, Dan Pybus (Iain Wilson 66), Paul Allan (Lewis McCann 83), Ryan Dow: Kevin O’Hara, Nikolay Todorov
SUBS NOT USED: Kyle Macdonald, Kai Kennedy, Craig Wighton, Leon Jones, Deniz Mehmet (GK)
SCORERS: O’Hara (7, 12)

Twelve Most Recent Meetings

The Fifers have won six of the last twelve fixtures, Arbroath five including the last three in which they scored ten goals. One game has been drawn.

26/12/21 | Dunfermline 0 Arbroath 3 | Championship
30/10/21 | Arbroath 4 Dunfermline 2 | Championship 

28/08/21 | Dunfermline 0 Arbroath 3 | Championship

24/04/21 | Dunfermline 4 Arbroath 3 | Championship

06/02/21 | Arbroath 2 Dunfermline 0 | Championship

26/12/20 | Dunfermline 1 Arbroath 0 | Championship

28/11/20 | Arbroath 1 Dunfermline 3 | Betfred Cup

04/03/20 | Arbroath 0-0 Dunfermline | Championship

29/10/19 | Dunfermline 2-0 Arbroath | Championship

31/08/19 | Arbroath 1-0 Dunfermline | Championship

15/08/17 | Dunfermline 2-0 Arbroath | Challenge Cup

19/07/16 | Dunfermline 3-0 Arbroath | League Cup

Recent Form

Dunfermline have won two, drawn three and lost one of their last six matches. They have won only two of their 13 away matches in this league campaign.

Arbroath have won one, drawn three and lost one of their last six matches. That defeat was at home to Hibs in the Scottish Cup. They have lost only two league matches since their reversal on 31st July.

Last six matches


Kilmarnock (H) D 0-0
Kilmarnock (A) L 1-2

Ayr United (A) D 1-1

Queen of the South (A) W 2-0

Inverness Caley Thistle (H) D 1-1

Hamilton Academical (H) W 1-0


Partick Thistle (H) D 1-1
Morton (A) D 0-0
Queen of the South (A) D 0-0
Hibernian (H) L 1-3
Hamilton Academical (H) D 2-2
Kilmarnock (H) W 1-0

League Record


League Position: 9th

League Points: 24

Goal Difference: -16

Away League Record: P13 W2 D5 L6 GF12 GA21

Last Six Match Form: WDWDLD


League Position: 1st

League Points: 48

Goal Difference: +20

Home League Record: P13 W5 D7 L1 GF19 GA10

Last Six Match Form: WDLDDD

Last Time Out

DUNFERMLINE (v Kilmarnock):
Jakub Stolarczyk: Matty Todd, Coll Donaldson, Efe Ambrose, Josh Edwards: Dan Pybus, Joe Chalmers: Steven Lawless, Graham Dorrans (c) (Dom Thomas 70), Ryan Dow: Lewis McCann (Kevin O’Hara 58).
SUBS NOT USED: Lewis Martin, Rhys Breen, Paul Allan, Reece Cole, Miller Fenton, Owain Fôn Williams (GK)

ARBROATH (v Partick Thistle): Derek Gaston: Scott Stewart, Ricki Little, Thomas O’Brien, Colin Hamilton: Chris Hamilton: Bobby Linn (Dale Hilson 66), Michael McKenna (James Craigen 77), Liam Henderson: Craig Wighton (Luke Donnelly 66), Jack Hamilton (Sam Ford 82)
SUBS NOT USED: Jason Thomson, David Gold, Michael Bakare, Calum Antell (GK)

Other Championship Fixtures

Partick Thisle v Inverness Caledonian Thistle (Friday)
Kilmarnock v Hamilton Academical
Queen of the South v Morton
Raith Rovers v Ayr United

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