Monday, 14 February 2011

Last minute hitch for Dumbarton

This article first appeared as the match report on the official DFC website. 

Airdrie Utd pressurise Sons
Dumbarton claimed only one point instead of three against a hesitant Airdrie United at SHS. Having led 1-0 for 87 minutes of the game, Sons conceded an equaliser in virtually the last minute of match, as a result of lax defending.

Interim manager Alan Adamson said: "We have thrown away two points. It was not a good game but we needed to see it through and didn't do that. It has happened so many times to us this season - we have lost late goals and can't see games out. I don't think Airdrie had a clearcut chance apart from the equaliser."

The game got off to the best possible start on 3 minutes, when the home side took the lead after Jon McShane forced a deft forward flick through the grasp of Diamonds 'keeper Mark Ridgers and across the line.

Both sides struggled to gain control of the game for much of the first half, creating few real chances. On 25 minutes Sons came close to profiting from a goalmouth scramble, being denied a strong handball claim in the process.

Moments later McShane dipped the ball over the floundering away defence with a diving shot, but it ended up safely in the Airdrie united goalkeeper's arms.

A close shave at the other end gave way to a sustained period of Dumbarton pressure and two well-crafted corners. Only the visitors' numbers and some last ditch defending kept the Sons out.

Shortly before half time the Diamonds surged forward themselves, but Dumbarton held out to maintain their 1-0 lead into the break.

The second half started in a scrappy fashion, with a series of niggling fouls and unforced errors interrupting the flow of the game.

Sons' Paul Nugent went on a darting, twisting run on 62 minutes, just as the match looked as if it had reached stalemate. His finish could not live up to the quality of the move, but as Airdrie countered, the number 5 backtracked swiftly to supply a crucial defensive tackle.

A superb long through ball from youngster Jordan Halsman almost enabled Pat Walker, who frequently looked threatening up front, to manoeuvre past Ridgers on 70 minutes. But the Diamonds' 'keeper just managed to get his foot on the ball to put it safely into touch.

Mark Gilhaney also flashed a shot narrowly past the Airdrie United post, as Dumbarton tried to reassert themselves. Shortly afterwards, Sons 'keeper Stephen Grindlay used his feet to avert a threat on goal with a well-timed diving challenge.

Ross Campbell and Derek Carcary were brought on for Pat Walker and Jon McShane as the match drew to a close, with Carcary bursting through seconds after his arrival on the pitch, but then hitting the ball well over.

However, disaster struck right at the close, when Airdrie substitute Scott Morton moved swiftly through the centre of the Dumbarton defence and taking advantage of a momentary defensive hesitation to bag an equaliser.

The I-1 draw means that Sons slip from eighth to ninth place in the Second Division, while gaining a valuable point on Stenhousemuir and Peterhead, who both lost.

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