Saturday July 7, 2018
Deimantas Petravicius 6
Kevin O'Hara 16
Tom Dallison 33
Chris O'Neil 27
Leighton McIntosh 75
Airdrie visited Falkirk for the first time in five years as they rounded off their pre-season fixtures.
Although they were beaten by the odd goal in five, there were lessons to be learned and a lot of positives to be taken from a good showing against a side who are a fixture in the division above, often challenging for promotion.
After the returning former Bairn Darryl Duffy had curled an early 20 yard effort wide of keeper Robbie Mutch’s goal, Paul Hartley’s side grabbed the lead on six minutes when a neat through ball from Tom Owen Evans picked out Deimantas Petravicius who made headway into the penalty box then clipped the ball beyond the unsighted Scott Gallacher at his left post.
Mutch was called into action on the quarter hour mark, gathering a decent headed attempt from Dale Carrick. As play swept to the other end Tommy Robson found Kevin O’Hara in space on the left in behind the Airdrie defence. The forward took full advantage controlling the ball then cutting back inside and bending an effort beyond Gallacher into the far corner.
Some excellent play in the right hand corner between Carrick and Ryan Conroy fashioned a great ball into the box that Chris O’Neil raced on to, firing an angled shot beyond Mutch to narrow the deficit.
Falkirk reacted soon after by scoring a third goal in 33 minutes. A well worked short corner between Tom Owen Evans and O'Hara allowed Evans to have a wider angle and he delivered a powerful back post cross that centre back Tom Dallison headed into the Airdrie net.
The Diamonds set about reducing the margin again, but the young Falkirk keeper Mutch denied both Ryan Conroy and Scott Stewart to ensure the home side retained their two goal advantage at the break.
The inevitable frequent changes that followed at the interval and in the second half impacted on the flow of the game, but it was Airdrie who came more and more into the match and threatened the home side without making that final pass to unlock the Falkirk defence.
They were rewarded for their efforts though in 75 minutes when former Diamond Luke Watt’s passback put keeper Mutch under pressure and his attempted clearance was well blocked by Diamond striker Leighton McIntosh who deflected the ball into the net to make it 3-2.
It was a very decent showing against tough opposition ahead of the real action action next week.
Gallacher (Hutton 82'), O'Neil, MacDonald (Edwards 62'), Robertson, Crighton, Millar (Wilkie 70'), Stewart (S McIntosh 82'), Gallagher (Cairns 76'), Duffy (L McIntosh 62'), Carrick (Victoria 70'), Conroy (Russell 82')
John O'Brien at the Falkirk Stadium.
Photographs © John Steven. Click to view full size.