Alloa Athletic v Airdrieonians

2 - 1
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Two victories and six league points in our last two games have helped “The Wasps” move into a strong second place in the league and close the gap to only nine points behind leaders Livingston. Jim Goodwin’s team carried on the tempo from last weeks victory at Hampden Park and scored an early goal for the second week in a row.

Andy Graham who had opened the scoring after only 3 minutes then added his second goal of the game after only 16 minutes. It was a great start but it could have been more with Airdrieonians lucky not to be further behind before Iain Russell gave them a lifeline five minutes later.

The visitors then had their best spell of the match prior to half-time, but a tactical switch in the second half bringing on Steven Hetherington in midfield in place of striker Greig Spence helped regain the balance of play back in favour of the home side. Both teams had chances in the second half and the Alloa supporters were delighted to see their team extend their lead over Airdrieonians in second place and now look forward to Tuesday evening when “The Wasps” face another huge match at The Indodrill Stadium, when ex Alloa Athletic manager brings his East Fife side who are currently unbeaten in their last ten league matches.


 


jim goodwin after victory over airdrieonians

It was a great performance, we started the game really well and went two goals up and it could have been three or four having had a couple of one on one’s but we then dropped of the game a little bit and found ourselves getting a little too deep and Airdrie came back into the game in the first half but overall very pleased that we were able to follow up the good performance and result last week at Hampden Park against Queen’s Park, it was another huge three points and a good victory against a good Airdrie side.

We spoke about our starts to games a few weeks ago, when we were gifting teams one goal of a start and now we have managed to turn that corner, defensively we have been fantastic in the last four or five weeks with big Andy Graham & Frank McKeown immense but getting the first goal in the game was huge it’s really important and gives the lads a lot of confidence. Big Andy Graham was on a hat-trick, we were talking about it on the bench, if we got a penalty would he take it? The big man was outstanding it would have been very easy at his first goal just to lash at it but he was very calm and composed and he just lifted it over the keeper into the net from a couple of yards out, we had been working hard on corners at training, the quality of the deliveries we get from Calum Waters and Jordan Kirkpatrick on that particular occasion a great ball, a fantastic run and great header, these are the things we work hard on and can control, I thought the boys were excellent and their management of the game towards the end in the last ten/fifteen minutes when they saw the game out, killed it which was brilliant.

Airdrie are a very good team and a full time team, they clearly work hard during the week on counter attacking teams and they were very brave, Mark Wilson deserves a lot of credit because he sets his team up as an attacking side. We spoke about it before the game and during the week, when we are attacking that is when we will be at our most vulnerable defensively and I think you saw that today, they allowed our front four to stay up the park and when we lose possession in their final third then they break on you at pace they have good players in Adam Brown, Iain Russell and Andy Ryan – they have good energy and pace. They were always going to have a spell in the game and at that moment we just had to regroup and get the two full backs in nice and narrow, midfielders drop off the game and just see it out and we did that.

At half-time with our noses in front we made a tactical change and I was really pleased with Stevie Hetherington when he went on, Greig Spence was obviously disappointed but he realised why we made the decision and I think it was justified with the three points. I explained to Greig when we were going up the tunnel at half-time, we couldn’t continue in the second half the way we ended the first half it was as simple as that, we were getting over run in the middle of the park and they were causing us problems in the wider areas, so I went with five across the middle of the park to stop their full backs getting forward, they never got as much joy as they did at the end of the first half and Greig took it in the professional manner I expected him to be, he was disappointed he didn’t get another goal, he had a couple of opportunities but he will be back in on Tuesday.

Highlights

Ground

Indodrill Stadium
Indodrill Stadium, Alloa