Cowdenbeath 1, Albion Rovers 0.

Ladbrokes League 2


COWDENBEATH got the win they wanted at Central Park, last night, but Ladbrokes League 2 bottom side Albion made them have to fight for it in the steady rain.

A penalty separated the teams but the Fifers hit wood three times and deserved the points.

Cowden boss Gary Bollan was happy to win but was disappointed with the first-half performance from his side: “The open 45 minutes from us was very flat but the second was so much better.

“We looked sharper and started to create chances and hitting the woodwork three times showed how much better we were.

"It is good to be back on the winning trail and now we have to build on that over the next few weeks."

The team showed five changes from Saturday with Robbie Deas, Harvey Swann, Gary Fraser, Matt Henvey and Jordan Allan all brought in but in the opening half there was little fluidity about the play from either side.

The presence of the commanding Deas made a difference to Cowdenbeath's defending and really over the 90 minutes 'keeper Aaron Lennox, who had recovered from a hand injury, had little in the way of saves to make.

After the break Kyle Miller, Robbie Buchanan and Fraser took a grip of the game and the Blues had enough chance to have scored three or four.

Kris Renton had a good game fetching and carrying and bringing is midfield into the game and he struck wood on the interval whistle.

Cowden started aggressively and in six minutes Fraser’s free-kick was knocked on by Renton and with Allan ready to pounce Ross Clarke belted the ball to safety.

Rovers got going and Gerard Escursola made a lovely run past three home defenders and it took a well timed challenge from Jamie Todd to deflect the forward’s shot out for a corner.

In 24 minutes a Fraser throw saw the ball slipped through to Todd only six yards out but his finish lacked power and hit Mike Hardie and flew wide but three minutes later Rovers’ Greg Fotheringham made a great run into the Cowden box but his low shot was blocked by Todd.

Then two minutes from the break Albion had another chance when a slack Swann clearance went to Brian Ross and his 20 yarder flew just wide, but in time added on a Fraser corner was headed against the Rovers bar by Renton.

Five minutes into the second period Fraser Mullen’s 25 yard free-kick was finger tipped onto the bar by Rovers’ ‘keeper Peter Morrison.

Rovers were dangerous on the break and on the hour George Newell’s 14 yard header from Gary Phillips’ cross clipped the outside of Lennox’s left hand post on its way past.

However, in 62 minutes Cowden went ahead when Robbie Buchanan was hauled down by Robert Griffiths in the Albion box and FRASER made an expert job of the spot-kick.

Then two minutes later Mullen’s free-kick was met by Deas and his header was inches wide.

With 20 minutes left Buchanan’s 22 yarder hit the Rovers bar as Cowden started to dominate possession and Renton twice came close to adding to the tally.

Cowdenbeath: Aaron Lennox (7); Fraser Mullen (7), Harvey Swann (6); Jamie Todd (7), Robbie Deas (7), Kyle Milller (7); Jordan Allan (6) (Blair Malcolm 84 (2)), Robbie Buchanan (7), Kris Renton (8), Gary Fraser (7), Matt Henvey (6) (David Cox 51 (4)). Subs not used, Jordyn Sheerin, Martin Scott, Jamie Pyper, Kyle Sneddon and Dave McGurn.

Albion Rovers: Morrison (7); Hardie (6), Clarke (6); Fagan (6) (Watson 84 (2)), Griffiths (6), Ross (6); Reilly (7) (McMahon 72) (3)), Fotheringham (7), Newell (7), Hernando Escursola (5)) (Ward 46(5), Phillips (7). Subs not used, Wilson, Fisher, Gordon and Potts.

Referee-Graham Beaton (6)