Crucial late winner by Ross at Hampden

Last updated : 19 April 2009 By Fargone
722 souls at Hampden for this crucial 6 pointer.

We had more chances in a fairly mediocre encounter with both teams seeming nervy. We took a few bookings (Raeside, Lunan and Ross as well as Flyer - below) and then took the game. We could still blow it but its well in our hands now. Big danger next week at home to Stranraer

Arbroath boosted their survival chances with a narrow victory over Second Division rivals Queen's Park.

Queen's Park goalkeeper Zander Cowie tipped wide a 30-yard drive from Bryan Scott and the visitors had a penalty claim denied in a scoreless first half.

Richard Sinclair came close for the home side after the break and Cowie blocked Barry Sellars' low shot. Then Paul Ronald missed a gilt-edged opportunity to fire Queens in front when he headed past the post from six yards with the goal at his mercy.

Arbroath grabbed the points late on when Ross netted after a great run and cross from Craig Forsyth (or Barry Sellars?) sweeping home from 16 yards.

From Queens website

It was a cagey start in bright sunshine, with neither side managing to impose themselves early and no quick-fire goals to overcome this time. Queen's played their football and Arbroath as expected had the more physical edge to their game. The early play - the first 10 minutes - was memorable only for Cairney's calm in one midfield move and a splendid double tackle by Brough.
Queen's were winning a few fouls, but so far none in shooting range and those we did get were less than inventive. Cowie comfortably held a couple of through balls but opposite number Hill had yet to be called into action. But Cowie had to look sharp when Scott almost surprised him with a shot from 30 yards, the Queen's keeper touching it round a post low to his left. Arbroath threatened from the corner, winning the header for Bishop to head back across goal only for Cowie to take it high. Arbroath threatened again from another corner and Cowie did well under pressure to punch it clear.

We finally got a free kick that was in striking distance in 27 minutes, when Nicholas was floored right on the edge of the box, but Douglas's free kick was stopped by the wall. Cowie and Scott got a lecture from the ref after some handbags, and then in 37 minutes the Arbroath striker picked up an injury and was replaced by Ross. Raeside was booked for pulling back Odunewu in 41 minutes and then the striker was inches away from connecting in the box with Douglas's free kick. The last action of the first half was a Holms run to the byeline and a wicked outswinging cross which failed to find a taker. All very nervous stuff. And goodness knows how the players must be feeling!

Half-time: Queen's Park 0 Arbroath 0

A more positive restart by Queen's. Sinclair stepped over Cairney's corner but Ronald hadn't been to the rehearsal and blasted well over, then neat footwork by Harkins won him the space and time to fire in a shot which sailed only just over the top. Queen's created their best chance so far in 56, but Sinclair headed wide when put in the clear at the far post by Holms' deep cross.

The play was certainly more open now and Queen's had Cowie to thank when Sellars got away from Ure and the keeper saved his shot with his feet. Cowie was busier now. He punched away a corner and then tipped a Sellars free kick over the bar. Bishop was booked for a foul on Nicholas. Good defensive work by Douglas ended with an accurate pass upfield to Nicholas. He killed the ball and switched inside to Cairney and then on to Odunewu, who beat a man but mishit his shot wide. Sinclair was booked for bringing down Sellars and on the hour Watt replaced Odunewu.

But it was Arbroath who made the vital breakthrough in 81 minutes. Ronald lost the ball in midfield to Sellars who drove to the edge of the box, played in sub Ross, and he drove under the diving Cowie. It was a shattering blow for Queen's but it always had the look of a game that could be settled by one goal. Arbroath had created the better chances and had that edge in experience while hardly dominating the possession.

So, we're four points behind Arbroath and Alloa - who won at East Fife - with Alloa to come next week followed by Raith and Stirling. Still not mission impossible - but it's getting there.