In a strong showing over the 90 minutes, Clyde continued their recent good run by securing a 3-0 win over Cowdenbeath in Fife.
It was a cols but dry night in Fife
Gary Bollan’s men were unbeaten in 4 matches, heading into this contest, as the Fife side look to beat the drop come May.
While, former Blue Brazil boss Danny Lennon brought his Bully Wee side to this rescheduled midweek fixture having won 5 of their last 6 matches, drawing the other.
The pressure was put on by the hosts early on with 2 free-kicks flighted into the area but nothing came of either. The closest Cowden came in the first six minutes was a deep corner by Mullen on the left which evaded everyone despite Rumsby sliding in at the back-post.
The opening goal came on 12 minutes with the first shot on goal. Lamont drifted in from the right before Goodwillie played the ball wide left before Stewart pulled it back to McStay at the back post who slotted home from 12-yards with s crisp left-footed effort past McGurn in the home goal.
After 10 minutes of a stalemate with the game being bogged down in a midfield battle, the hosts began to press on again but nothing came of a Harvey Swann corner on 27 minutes.
Just seconds later, Boyle received the ball with his back to goal 20-yards out. The on-loan Huddersfield striker swivelled and curled narrowly wide, with the visitors looking to double their advantage before the break.
Bollan’s side kept on trying as Buchanan forced Gourlay into his first save of the evening, before Malcolm was played in on goal but the on-loan Dundee shot-stopper raced off his line to save at the feet of the midfielder.
Next, Buchanan was set free down the left by Sheerin with his delivery finding the on-rushing Ross County loanee but his effort hit his own man in front of goal before the visitors cleared.
Mullen drove in a low effort before Malcolm shot wide as Lennon’s men held on to their clean-sheet despite being put under pressure by the Fifers.
Pyper launched a long throw from the left but Sheerin’s flicked header was easy takings for Gourlay. Then, just before the break Mullen’s delivery was won by Kelty Hearts loan striker Sheerin whose looping header saw Malcolm put Gourlay under stress; the keeper failed to clutch the ball as it landed in the net but referee Brown disallowed the goal for a foul to the frustration of the home bench.
It was a closely contested first-half at Central Park
The half-time whistle blew with the Bully Wee in front but it’ll be to the frustration of Lennon, I suspect, with Clyde not troubling McGurn barring the goal.
Gourlay has made a couple of saves to deny the Blue Brazil who have had the majority of the play but at the interval at Central Park the hosts are down 1-0.
Clyde started the second-half brightly as Cuddihy linked well with Boyle before finding Goodwillie inside the area but the striker was offside as Lennon’s men began with a greater tempo than they had shown during the first period.
Lamont then flashed a ball across goal which was just too heavy for Goodwillie at the back-post. At the other end, on 56 minutes, Pyper took a long throw – from the right this time – which McNiff cleared but the hosts remained in possession as Mullen floated it back in: another clearance followed before Miller drove an effort well wide of target from distance.
Goal scorer McStay flighted in a free-kick from the halfway line, with Goodwillie the target again but the former Plymouth striker couldn’t direct his header on target on this occasion. However, the Clyde forward was on-target seconds later as he slotted home past McGurn to double the away sides lead to the delight of the visiting supporters.
Cowdenbeath made their first change of the evening immediately following the goal with Bradley Smith being replaced by Ben Reilly. Sheerin was foiled 19-yards out by McNiff which gifted the hosts a chance to score through Cox but his attempt hit the wall before Swann’s cross from the left ran out for a goal-kick.
Nicolll came on for Boyle in Lennon’s first substitution of the evening before Grant rifled a shot just wide from 30-yards as Clyde looked for a third to kill the contest.
With just under 20 minutes remaining, Cox hit a half-volley which Gourlay tipped wide, flying to his right to concede the corner. Miller then flashed a shot over from the resultant set-piece.
Clyde completed their substitutions with two wingers coming on: Ally Love replaced Lamont while Cuddihy took a seat on the bench to give Adam Martin some game time.
Reilly cut in from the left but his shot was saved by Gourlay before Goodwillie hit a tame free-kick against the wall.
However, the Scotland internationalist won another set-piece on the left after taking on 3 Cowdenbeath players. Martin’s centre bobbled around before McStay rifled home his second and Clyde’s third to ensure the points were going home with Lennon’s promotion playoff hopefuls.
Goodwillie broke free down the left before cutting inside and getting a shot away which McGurn spilled before Rumsby cleared the danger for Cowden.
The travelling support saw a terrific team performance by Danny Lennon’s side
That was the last action of note as Clyde moved up to 4th in the League Two table. The Broadwood club now sit above Elgin as the playoff battle heats up, with Stenhousemuir also looking to sneak into that elusive 4tb spot.
On the other hand, Bollan’s men struggled in the second-half after a positive opening despite the scoreline at the break. Cowdenbeath now sit 10 points behind Berwick with 6 games left, albeit the Wee Rangers have a game in-hand.
After the match, Bollan spoke briefly with the media:
FULL-TIME: Cowdenbeath 0-3 Clyde
1. David McGurn
2. Fraser Mullen
3. Harvey Swann
4. Jamie Pyper
5. Scott Rumsby
6. Kyle Miller (Captain)
7. David Cox
8. Blair Malcolm
9. Jordyn Sheerin
10. Bradley Smith (Ben Reilly 62′)
11. Robbie Buchanan
17. Blair Penman (GK)
12. Jordan Hornby
14. Matthew McInally
15. Brandon Luke
16. Ben Reilly
18. Jack Whittaker
19. Mark Fotheringham
1. Kyle Gourlay
2. Kieran Duffie
3. Jordan Stewart
4. Martin McNiff
5. Dylan Cogill
6. Christopher McStay
7. Barry Cuddihy (Ally Love 76′)
8. Raymond Grant
9. David Goodwillie (Captain)
10. Jack Boyle (Kevin Nicoll 69′)
11. Mark Lamont (,Adam Martin 76′)
21. Blair Currie (GK)
12. Kevin Nicolll
14. Stephane Kipre
15. Smart Osadolor
16. Ally Love
17. Jordan Lowdon
18. Adam Martin
Referee; Stephen Brown