Annan Athletic v Cowdenbeath
Annan lifted the points courtesy of a well constructed 51stminute goal, it turned out to be all that separated the teams in a match where on loan Cowdenbeath keeper Kevin Dabrowskie was the essential reason his team were still in contention up till the final minute. The on loan Hibernian keeper had 3 stunning saves in the second half to deny Annan what would have been a more comfortable victory for the Galabankies had it not been for the keepers brilliance.
Annan started the match without the suspended Steven Swinglehurst other than that the manager stuck with the same starting line up which suffered a heavy 4-0 defeat the previous week against Elgin City. Cowdenbeath manager Gary Bollanwho’s team also suffered a defeat the previous week at the hands of title favourites Cove Rangers started this match without top scorers David Cox and longer term injury to Fraser Mullen.
Cowdenbeath started the match very well and in the 3rd minute Annan had Jamie Ballantyne to thank when the Annan full back was at hand to clear Connor Smiths net bound effort off the goal line . At the other end Scott McLean set Kyle Bradley up with the shot being blocked. Archie Thomas tested Annan keeper Chris Smith in the 20th minute . Cowdenbeath continued to look the team most likely to break the deadlock and in the 30thminute an excellent Cowdenbeath move ended with Robbie Buchannan’s effort from the edge of the box going narrowly past the post . Annan were under pressure against the well drilled Cowdenbeath team who forced a couple of corners in quick concession which were well defended.
Annan however had a great opportunity in the 40th minute when a Matty Douglas header from a Scott McLean free kick went wide of the target , it was a glorious opportunity missed by Annan to go ahead against the run of play.
If Annan played second fiddle in the first half they certainly upped their game and formation in the second half as the Annan started to impose their authority in the match. The vital moment on the match arrived in the 51st minute when Jordan Holt combined with Nathan Flannigan who’s perfect cross found the head of Kyle Wylkie who directed the ball into the top corner of the net to give Dabrowskie no chance.
The goal gave Annan confidence and they started to put pressure on the Cowdenbeath defence, Kyle Wykie was denied by Dabrowskie who pulled off a fine save to deny Wylkie , Annan continued to look the more dangerous team and after a fine period of play Nathan Flannigan was denied by the post . The introduction of Nade posed more questions on the Cowdenbeathdefence and it was keeper Dabrowskie who pulled of a double save following a couple of corners firstly he tipped Flannigansnet bound effort over the bar and then he denied Nade from the resulting corner when his header was heading for the net until the keeper pulled off another super save to push the effort over the bar.
As the match progressed towards the final 10 minutes it was Cowdenbeath who started to look dangerous substitute Jordan Allan looked menacing and in the 87th minute the striker was denied by a good save from Chris Smith .
It was a decent performance form Annan after the previous weeks showing and their second half performance merited thevictory . Cowdenbeath looked well organized and you can see how they have managed to grab a top 3 place .
Annan face a mid week match at home to Brechin City on Tuesday evening and Annan will need to continue their improvement if they hope to lift the points in this match.
ANNAN ATHLETIC – Chris Smith, Matty Douglas, Jamie Ballantyne , Kyle Bradley, Ayrton Sonkur, Darren Barr , Scott McLean ( Niyah Joseph 90 min ), Kyle Wilkie , Tommy Muir ( Christain Nade 74 min ), Jordan Holt ( Broque Watson 64 min ),Nathan Flannigan Subs not used Lyle Avic, Russell Currie, Lewis McLear, Euan Griffiths.
COWDENBEATH – Kevin Dabrowskie, Jamie Piper, Harvey Swan, Jamie Todd, Craig Barr, Kyle Miller, Graham Taylor ( Jordan Allan 64 min )Robbie Buchannan, Connor Smith, Archie Thomas, Kris Renton. Subs not used Euan Valentine, Michael Herd, Kyle Sneddon, Macallan White, Ross Pollock, JacobGlass.
Referee. Scott Lambie. Assistants – Ivan Stankovic and Gary Train
Cove Rangers continued their good form with a late winner from the penalty spot to grab all the points against Stirling Albion. Edinburgh City scored a late eqauliser to deny the in form Elgin City the match ending 1-1. Albion Rovers grabbed all the point in a 2-1 home victory over Stenhousemuir and Queens park defeated Brechin City by 5-2 .
Tuesday night sees the visit of Brechin to Galabank and next Saturday Annan travel up to Stirling Albion.