Ayr United 3 Falkirk 2: Ayr blow Bairns away in second half

A near-perfect first half performance from Falkirk at Somerset Park was undone in seventeen second half minutes as Ayr United defeated the Bairns 3-2.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 15th September 2018, 5:20 pm
Updated Monday, 17th September 2018, 5:56 pm
Ray McKinnon and assistant Darren Taylor (Pics: Michael Gillen)
Ray McKinnon and assistant Darren Taylor (Pics: Michael Gillen)

A near-perfect first half performance from Falkirk at Somerset Park was undone in seventeen second half minutes as Ayr United defeated the Bairns 3-2.

First half goals from debutant Zak Rudden and Deimantas Petravicius gave the Honest Men the three points.

It was an even opening to proceedings, which will have pleased Falkirk manager Ray McKinnon, with just a couple of half chances for each team.

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Zak Rudden celebrates his opening goal

Aaron Muirhead dragged wide from 20 yards after being teed up by Andy Irving as Ayr struggled to create at the other end.

Falkirk took the lead through debutant Zak Rudden on 17 minutes. Irving was again involved, the 18-year-old found Petravicius whose low ball was scrambled in by Rudden.

The Bairns were bouyant, having scored their first first half goal of the Championship campaign, and doubled their lead on 25 minutes.

Robbie Crawford gave the ball away in midfield and Irving played an inch-perfect ball to Petravicius who hammered his right foot effort past Ross Doohan.

The Bairns celebrate going two ahead

Ayr had a couple of half chances as they aimed to half the deficit going into the break.

Lawrence Shankland, who was kept remarkably quiet first half, had an effort saved by Fasan - just after the Italian had denied Alan Forrest. The Bairns, though, were 2-0 up at the break.

Into the second period, and three goals in seventeen minutes had the Bairns behind.

On 48 minutes, Falkirk gave Ayr their first goal back. Having given the ball away the midfield, Lawrence Shankland capitalised and hammered low and through Leo Fasan.

Falkirk fans couldn't believe what they were seeing in the first half

Ayr were completely on top at the beginning of the second half, and Fasan almost gave the hosts a leveller on 57 minutes when he spilled a ball into the box. Crawford, though, was denied.

Just five minutes later and it was all level. Michael Moffat nodded the ball into the path of Andy Geggan who hammered home on the half volley.

The Falkirk collapse was complete on 65 minutes as a ball into the box was parried by Leo Fasan, before the ball was knocked against the Italian and in after a scramble in the box.

Shankland, having been quiet in the first 45, was lively after the break and whistled a free-kick just over the bar as the game reached the last 20 minutes.

Paul Paton volleyed a cracking effort goalwards on 80 minutes, but was denied by Ross Doohan in the Ayr net.

Ayr peppered the Falkirk goal as they searched for a fourth and Tom Dallison had to be alert to clear off the line in stoppage time after Crawford had beaten Fasan.

Ian McCall's men held on to pick up the victory, with Falkirk now three points adrift of Alloa in ninth and four behind Dunfermline in eighth.