Bairns defeat Hearts in a tale of two trialists

05/05/12. John Devlin. FALKIRK. Falkirk Stadium.
05/05/12. John Devlin. FALKIRK. Falkirk Stadium.

A goal from trialist Luke Leahy saw off John McGlynn’s Hearts as Falkirk fans took a first look at Steven Pressley’s revamped team.

It was a tale of the two trialists as Leahy, and Lyle Taylor, both signed on for the forthcoming season at Westfield, but with their registrations still to be finalised, the men wearing the number nine and eleven shirts were not listed by name in the starting line-up.

New signings Chris Smith, Jonathan Flynn and Andy Haworth were named however and each was handed their home debut.

Following a first half in which the capital side dominated possession and had multiple chances to open the scoring, Falkirk came into the game and took the lead five minutes after the break when Leahy rolled the ball past Mark Ridgers after a good cut-back from Taylor.

The number nine had been sent clear by his fellow-trialist and looked to have taken the ball too wide – but he managed to angle his pass just enough to deceive the Hearts defence, and Leahy was waiting to take full advantage.

It was tough on the Jambos given their earlier dominance. They arrived in Falkirk with a team very different from the one that lifted the Scottish Cup just eight weeks ago but still looked in determined mood right from the kick-off.

John Sutton, Mehdi Taouil and David Templton all went close in the opening stages, but a combination of poor finishing and solid goalkeeping from Mark McGovern kept the scores level.

In the second half the Bairns keeper was again regularly called to palm away several long-range shots from McGowan and Templeton.

But Falkirk had found their stride by this stage and had had begun to keep possession and create chances of their own.

Leahy tried a spectacular over-head kick from six yards out which Mark Ridgers did well to tip over.

In the end the one goal was enough to settle the game and Falkirk will travel to Methill this Saturday to face East Fife with renewed confidence.