4 - 3Full Time
Alloa Athletic yesterday extended their recent good home record to three home wins in a row and at the same time gave manager Allan Maitland his first win in a local derby against Stirling Albion since joining the club in January, 2006. Alloa Athletic players and management looked to want yesterday’s victory more than their counterparts from Stirling and played with great energy and passion. It was a game of football the fans had plenty to shout about, Alloa deservedly went ahead through Jamie Stevenson in the 21st minute, however the game came alive in the second half when Alloa raced to a 3-0 lead and many Stirling Albion fans left the ground prior to Martin Grehan pulling a goal back for the visitors on 63 mins. Man of the match Brown Ferguson restored Alloa’s three goal cushion after 75 minutes from the penalty spot, but three minutes later a deflected Liam Corr shot gave Stirling Albion an unlikely lifeline. Doubt was now in the Alloa minds for the first time in the match and when substitute Paul Murphy powered through with four minutes to go, Stirling Albion looked like they could snatch a draw as he made the score 4-3. Even after this both teams had further chances and at the end Alloa were delighted to hear the final whistle, in a game they deserved to win but in the end the scoreline was closer than many Stirling Albion fans would believe, especially the ones who left early.
allan maitland after derby victory
I felt we were a lot sharper today and started the match so much better than we have in recent weeks, I think that is the first game this season, in any competition that we have been ahead at half time so I think that probably tells its own story. We played well in the first half and probably deserved the lead. I thought the first 25minutes of the second half we were excellent and played at a tempo that caused them a real problem. They scored their goal which got them back into it when it looked as thought it was going to go 4 or 5 nothing. Once we scored the penalty we got a real grip of the game again, whether it was tiredness or the break they got for the second goal all of a sudden, Stirling had bodies pouring forward and this caused us a problem in the last 10 minutes when we were hanging on – we were pleased to hang on. I have to say I am not sure that 4-3 is a true reflection of the game, quite frankly if it had finished 4-0 I could not have been any more pleased, than I am now, I am just delighted to have won the game and I thought it was a great game of football and I hope the fans enjoyed it.
I thought in Brown Ferguson we had the outstanding player on the football park and hopefully we can now try and find some away form that matches our home form and if we can do that we should hopefully get ourselves further up the table a bit. We have struggled to create chances this season but today we decided to go with Jamie Stevenson and Andy Scott up front and try and get Kyle MacAulay to support as much as possible and I think the three of them were excellent, we had a lot of touches of the ball which helps and we tried to get the ball into their feet as much as possible or in behind their back four to try and get David Lowing and Andy Lawrie turning and I think we did that really well in the first half in particular.
The game was won in the fifteen minute spell in the second half, we came out in the second half and tried to get the game as quickly as possible at their end of the park, it was great runs from Brown Ferguson and his composure at the second goal setting it up for Kyle MacAulay which was the telling factor in the game, and having got the second goal the third one came quite quickly, it was a great game of football, a good result for us and finally pleased to have won a local derby, there was a lot of injuries and we had to shuffle things about, Dougie Hill is beginning to play like the player I hoped he would be and in Brown Ferguson, Jamie Stevenson, Andy Scott and Kyle MacAulay we had so many good players today. That is the way I would like us to play and that is the way I thought we would play this season but we have been too open, losing far too many goals and to be fair we lost three again today.
We have lost too many goals this season because I’ve tried to get as many football players on the park as possible. In the last few weeks we have reverted to trying to be hard to beat and trying to get the ball played more in the opposition end of the park. Good players help and when you win a couple of games the confidence goes up, and when players are confident the things they try start to come off, I also have been encouraging the midfield players to get into the box as often as possible and the number of times we had players crossing the ball today for players coming into the box, we could and should have scored more goals. The things that we have been working on are coming to fruition for us but six games played away from home and six defeats tells its own story, that’s what we need to address now, we have done great today but we will have a really hard game at Stranraer next week and we need to find some away form that is going to help us move up the league a bit more. More of the same next week would be good but just now I would settle for a 1-0 victory for us with any type of goal.