No Homecoming this year - Fife freeze out the Lichties

Last updated : 29 November 2008 By Fargone
Freezing conditions at New Bayview under clear skies and the power station - a decent and noisy Lichtie following throughout. Arbroath started with Raeside back in defence, Black back in midfield and Reilly a first start of the season up front. A very strange refereeing decision to book Sellars as he rushed after a ball on the edge of the box and was deemed to have dived.

There was not much to choose between the teams as each had spells on top and both tried to pass it around until Fife went for the long diagonal ball second half. Chances were few and far between and, in general the game lacked much of the spark exected of a cup-tie. Arbroath got themselves into promising positions but very often the final ball was very poor. And despite going one down with 20 minutes to go, there was no rousing counter as we couldn't breach their rearguard

First half saw Fife with more possession but offering little threat for much of the first 30 minutes before we stepped up a gear and started to create. Linn went very close for ife when it looked easier to score. Just before halftime, a lovely incisive passing movement saw Reilly clear and certain to score but it slipped past

Second half looked even until a bit of quality marked the difference between the teams. Former Scotland striker Stevie Crawford broke the deadlock on 70 minutes, slotting home after Chris Templeman's intelligent lay-off. east Fife paid big money for these two and their wages are probably more than the entire Arbroath first 11.

With Weir on (and later Masson and Gates too late to make any difference) we stepped up our efforts but lacked the quality delivery to open up an east Fife now sitting on their lead. Craig O'Reilly sealed the win in the final with with a tidy finish past Arbroath goalkeeper Darren Hill.

Not a bad performance by the Lichties but just not good enough. We lacked the guile to carve them open, lackeddecent delivery of the final ball and as we tried to claw back the goal, fans were complaining that too many passess were square and backwards.

Out of Europe by December, it's time to focus on the league