The ball’s burst at dour Almondvale

Can you name the Falkirk player shooting for goal, and the defender trying to block his shot?
Can you name the Falkirk player shooting for goal, and the defender trying to block his shot?

The Benchman encountered an old aquaintance on Saturday - but can’t blame his other friends who stayed away from Almondvale.

HARTLEPOOL: Phrase books at the ready down Hartlepool way. Will Yogi understand them? Will Yogi be understood? Judging by his first game in charge, a 5-0 defeat to Coventry, there is much to be done if Yogi is to be “in it for the long term” as he said at his inaugural press conference.

SEEING DOUBLE: I really thought Stevie Fulton was running the line on the main stand side. The guy was a dead ringer for the former Bairns midfield maestro.

LAST WEEK’S TEASER: The ex-Bairn linked to Hatem Ben Arfa is Simon Stainrod, who assisted the player settle in to English life on Tyneside. This week, who was signed by Falkirk from Southampton in 1994/95 and ended his Senior career with The Shire in 2008/09?

MYSTERY PIC: The picture we featured showed a league game at Hampden between Queens Park and Falkirk. The players were Ian Rae and Bert Slater of Falkirk and Junior Omand of Queens. In the background was George Herd.This week, can you name the Falkirk player shooting for goal and the defender trying to block his shot?

BEST LAUGH OF THE DAY: It was a pretty dire afternoon and those who stayed away were the lucky ones. Almondvale, or whatever it is called now, is a dour, drab place and very cold at the best of times. Thank goodness for a bit of light relief when the already mentioned linesman was felled by a wayward clearance.

LOOK WHO IT IS: Sitting behind us doing his BBC Radio summariser stint was none other than Falkirk’s erstwhile record signing Derek Ferguson. Some of us thought he was going to be acting as a summariser for Falkirk TV.

A METAPHOR?: The ba’s burst. Not once, but twice it seemed. Darren Dods drew attention to the offending sphere. Was it an omen? The game in Scotland is in a bad way. Less than 1500 for a game between two sides that were in the SPL just a few years ago. A woeful home support. A dearth of away supporters buses. Less atmosphere than a lunar landscape. The passing game- or the passing of a game? And not to mention exorbitant prices for entry and refreshments. £2.10 for a cup of tea? A packet of wine gums for £2.38? What do they think we are? Football fans?

YOU DON’T SAY: Full marks to the stadium announcer for his observation skills. As the teams ran out for the second half, he informed us that we were at a First Division match between Livingston and Falkirk. Well I never knew that.


Match rating: 7

Team rating: 5

Opposition: 7

Referee:Charleston 7

Best Bairn: Michael McGovern