Cowdenbeath 0 Falkirk 1: Baird goal earns Bairns useful win

John Baird heads the only goal of the game to hand Falkirk victory at Central Park. Picture: Michael Gillen
John Baird heads the only goal of the game to hand Falkirk victory at Central Park. Picture: Michael Gillen
  • Baird goal the only highlight in an otherwise scrappy game
  • Win moves Falkirk within a point of Queen of the South

A John Baird header five minutes into the second half was enough to earn Falkirk a valuable victory at Cowdenbeath.

With fourth placed Queen of the South losing 3-0 at Raith Rovers, the Bairns move within one point of the Championship play-off places.

Bairns boss Peter Houston throws the ball to Kieran Duffie. Picture: Michael Gillen

Bairns boss Peter Houston throws the ball to Kieran Duffie. Picture: Michael Gillen

And with the Dumfries side travelling to play champions Hearts on Saturday while Falkirk play Dumbarton, this drab game played on a chilly Tuesday evening could prove to be a very useful win for Peter Houston’s side.

The first half was a scrappy affair with both teams failing to get the ball on the deck or build any real passing movement.

A bumpy playing surface didn’t help matters, but in truth neither team was at their best.

“That surface was possibly the worst we’ve played on this season,” said Houston after the game.

That surface was possibly the worst we’ve played on this season. It’s certainly a leveller

Peter Houston

“It’s certainly a leveller. We’re just delighted to be leaving with the three points.”

A goalmouth scramble on the half hour mark saw the ball cannon off Jamie MacDonald’s post, which would prove to be the only real chance of the game for Jimmy Nicholl’s men.

Baird was sent through on goal shortly before the break following a long ball from Tom Taiwo but could only drag his shot wide of the post.

The striker made up for that miss with 50 minutes gone when he was allowed too much room by the home defence and calmly nodded another Taiwo cross into the net.

Falkirk's Botti Biabi tussles for the ball with Nat Wedderburn of Cowdenbeath. Picture: Michael Gillen

Falkirk's Botti Biabi tussles for the ball with Nat Wedderburn of Cowdenbeath. Picture: Michael Gillen

It was Baird’s eighth goal of the season and could well prove to be one of his most important.

Falkirk created few other chances but never looked like surrendering their lead against the dogged part-timers who lacked any real attacking threat.

Cowdie’s Kenny Adamson was dismissed after 83 minutes for a late tackle on Baird.

Cowdenbeath: Thomson, Adamson, O’Brien, Armstrong, Wedderburn, Robertson, Nish, Higgins, Toshney, Marshall (Oyenuga 63), Hughes (Buchanan 85)

Falkirk: MacDonald, Duffie, Vaulks, Taiwo, Alston, Sibbald, Kerr (Cooper 51), Grant, Leahy, Biabi, Baird

Referee: Kevin Graham

Attendance: 565