Falkirk's fight not enough to earn a point against Airdrieonians

The Bairns put in a fighting performance against Airdrieonians in cinch League 1, but eventually lost out 3-2 to the hosts despite having the best of the chances at the Penny Cars Stadium.

By Ben Kearney
Saturday, 15th January 2022, 5:02 pm
Anton Dowds battles for the ball in midfield (Pictures by Alan Murray)
Anton Dowds battles for the ball in midfield (Pictures by Alan Murray)

Goals from Callum Fordyce and Scott McGill had Ian Murray’s side the lead at the break, with Callumn Morrison being left to rue a series of sitters minutes before the opening goal.

Brad McKay gave the Bairns hope with a header early on in the second half but Calum Gallagher’s late strike gave Falkirk too much to do.

Despite a late Anton Dowds goal to make it 3-2, and numerous missed chances throughout the match, Falkirk left North Lanarkshire with nothing to show for a decent display.

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The first attacking action of the match came on the ten minute mark, with Craig McGuffie’s slack touch allowing Adam Frizzell to have a tame effort at goal. Craig Watson then forced Paddy Martin into a decent diving save moments later.

Falkirk had cause for concern on 26 minutes when Martin went down off the ball holding his foot. Rangers youngster Scott Cowie was the Bairns option off the bench after the 16-year-old joined on a 7-day emergency loan.

However Martin managed to shake off the injury and continued.

Callumn Morrison should have scored the opening goal the game desperately needed on the half hour mark when Charlie Telfer’s pinpoint cross found the forward in front of goal, but the Bairns mercurial figure blasted a header over from a few yards when it looked easier to score.

It would be the home side who took the lead on 37 minutes after a spell of pressure in and around the Bairns box. Diamonds captain Fordyce was positioned perfectly to score after Falkirk failed to clear their lines.

Morrison should have grabbed a quick equaliser after a stramash in the Airdrie box saw Max Currie make a close range stop.

Scott McGill doubled the hosts lead just before the break with a superb strike. The Bairns defence stood still as a wonderful one touch move was too much to handle.

Falkirk started the second half in the perfect fashion, halving the deficit through an unlikely goalscorer in Brad McKay. His powerful header from a set piece smashed in off the crossbar to give the Bairns hope.

Anton Dowds and Telfer both had efforts at goal as the Lanarkshire side held firm.

Goalscorer McKay took one for the team on the hour mark when he hauled down McGill who broke free on the counter attack as Martin Rennie’s side continued to look for an equaliser.

On 66 minutes the Diamonds thought they had sealed the three points after the ball found its way into the net but referee Duncan Williams eventually chopped it off for handball.

Falkirk went agonisingly close to grabbing the second goal they had been searching for ten minutes from the end when Aaron Taylor-Sinclair broke free at the back post and had time to head home. The defender fired a bullet header just past the near post.

Dowds then had a flicked on header saved by Currie with time running out for the Bairns.

Substitute Calum Gallagher slotted home from a tight angle on the counter attack to give the Diamonds a two-goal advantage going into the final moments of the game.

But Dowds then headed home after a deflection in the box to make it 3-2 and give Falkirk hope during a frantic ending to the match.

Teams

Airdrieonians: Max Currie, Callum Fordyce, Rhys McCabe, Scott Agnew, Dylan Easton, Callum Smith, Jordan Allan, Craig Watson, Scott Walker, Adam Frizzell, Scott McGill.

Subs: Jay Cantley, Josh Kerr, Calum Gallagher, Dean Ritchie, Matty McDonald.

Falkirk: Paddy Martin, Ryan Williamson, Ben Hall, Brad McKay, Aaron Taylor-Sinclair, Leon McCann, Gary Miller, Charlie Telfer, Craig McGuffie, Callumn Morrison, Anton Dowds.

Subs: Scott Cowie, Aidan Nesbitt, Jaime Wilson, Seb Ross, Aidan

Keena, Cammy Williamson, Mackenzie Lemon.

Referee: Duncan Williams.