Diamonds shine as ten-man Falkirk falter in heavy defeat

Falkirk were dealt an early season blow as they were well-beaten 4-0 by Airdrieonians on Saturday afternoon in League 1.

By Ben Kearney
Saturday, 6th August 2022, 6:59 pm

The Lanarkshire outfit were worth winners on the day and a strong second-half showing saw them take the three points.

It was a day of disappointments for Bairns’ boss John McGlynn, with a series of injuries compounding what was another frustrating and poor display overall.

After failing to find the back of the net last weekend against Montrose, Rangers loanee Juan Alegria came into the starting eleven.

It was a terrible result for Falkirk (Photos: Michael Gillen)

He had the first chance of the match on 7 minutes when he was fed in one-on-one, but he comically fell over at the key moment.

Then moments later, Coll Donaldson had an effort blocked by own centre-half partner Brad McKay in the box.

Once again for Falkirk this was sign of things to come as they couldn’t get the ball over the line.

Rhys McCabe’s side slowly came into the match and former Montrose man Cammy Ballantyne had a shot crash off the upright on 14 minutes.

Juan Alegria battles for possession

Callumn Morrison was the next to have a tame effort at goal, as his shot went straight into Murray Johnson’s hands after good work from Alegria.

As Falkirk went forward, they were sucker-punched by a clinical Airdrie side.

A mix of poor defending and good forward play saw Calum Gallagher free in the box to tap home on the 20 minute mark.

The hosts then sat back and allowed McGlynn’s side to pepper Johnson’s goal from range – with the Hibs loanee untroubled by the Bairns lack of guile in shooting opportunities.

PJ Morrison went off injured

Into the second half, and it was much the same.

PJ Morrison was forced off on 55 minutes with back-up goalkeeper Paddy Martin coming on in his place.

On the hour mark the hosts then doubled their advantage with a fortuitous second goal.

Gallagher once again came alive in the area to tap home on the line, but the corner kick which led to the goal came from a dreadful call from the referee.

Steven Hetherington in midfield

Falkirk’s best chance of the match came shortly after as they looked to get back into the match.

Johnson produced a wonderful diving save to deny Alegria a first Bairns goal.

A triple chance from boss John McGlynn did bring some energy into the way sides play, but it wasn’t enough to break down a strong Airdrie side.

Falkirk’s misery was compounded as Brad McKay was forced off with an injury, leaving just ten men on the pitch – with all five substitutions having already been made.

McGlynn’s men then fell apart, reminiscent of last season’s horror shows every other weekend.

Adam Frizzell nearly added a third when he fizzed one past Martin after being played in on goal.

Brad McKay was stretchered off

They did eventually get in on 85 minutes with Gabby McGill racing in on goal to slot home.

McCabe’s side weren’t quite finished yet, and with minutes left the Airdire boss crossed for substitute Salim Kouider-Aissa, who fired home with his first touch to make it four.

Ryan Williamson also cleared one of the line as Falkirk fell to a heavy defeat in their first away match of the league campaign.

Teams

Airdrie: Johnson, Ballantyne, Watson, Fordyce, Deveney, Jamieson, McCabe, Frizzell, Devenny, Gallagher (McGill, 77), Smith.

Subs (not used): Hutton (GK), Kouider-Aissa, Wylie, Gibson.

Falkirk: PJ Morrison (Martin, 53), McGuffie (Williamson, 70), McKay, Donaldson, Mackie, McGinn (Burrell, 70), Hetherington, C. Morrison (Oliver, 54), Yeats, Nesbitt, Alegria (Lawal, 70).

Subs (not used): McCann, Connolly, Carroll, Wilson.

Rumarn Burrell made his debut as a sub