QOS 0 Falkirk 2: Dominant in Dumfries

Falkirk moved second in the Championship table and all but secured a play-off position with a comprehensive win over Queen of the South.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 4th March 2017, 5:02 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 11:02 am
Lewis Kidd gave the Bairns the lead. Pic by Michael Gillen

Consistency has been the Bairns'issue this term but an eighth game unbeaten and a significantly improved performance from that shown in last week's draw with Dumbarton delighted the travelling support in Dumfries.

{http://www.falkirkherald.co.uk/football-fixtures-results?pstr=player&coid=&teid=208&plid=239403 Lewis Kidd| Player Stats} gave the Bairns the lead with a free-kick on the stroke of half-time and Craig Sibbald slammed in a second-half penalty to give the Bairns the win but the battled to the points which now put the Bairns six points off the Championship leaders Hibs.

The win puts 11 points between the fifth placed Doonhamers and Peter Houston's side, with the season entering its' final quarter which should be enough to give Falkirk a play-off place at the very least.

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Sibbald capped an excellent performance with a penalty. Pic by Michael Gillen.

Queens played like they were playing catch-up. They didn't want to let Falkirk move out of sight but in the end, they couldn't cope with the Bairns.

The first half was keenly contested, and niggly, but Falkirk edged it with Kidd's deflected free-kick seconds before the break.

Falkirk's flow had been disrupted by a nasty looking injury to James Craigen who went down while chasing a ball out of the park and was replaced by Fraser Aird.

Danny Rogers had had only one moment of panic when Dom Thomas got the better of Leahy early in the game and hit the by-line. His powerful front post cross was beaten away by the Bairns goalkeeper and further follow-ups were also repelled by the Bairns'backline.

Falkirk were excellent all over the park. Pic by Michael Gillen.

The feeling amongst the home support was that this was a must-win game to have any chance of catching Falkirk and competing in the play-offs. They made it difficult for Peter Houston's side but the Bairns could conceivably have been three up at the interval only spurning two openings shortly before Kidd's goal.

Luca Gasparotto flashed a header across goal after his compatriot Fraser Aird'scorner. And then John Baird hit the side netting when clean through after taking advantage of a slip by Scott Mercer.But Kiddmade amends when he blasted in from less than 20 yards.

Darren Brownlie had fouled Bairdinside the 'D' on the edge of the area and the right-back in for the suspended Aaron Muirhead blasted in the opener with the aid of a deflection.

The Bairns went in ahead but had been in a battle. As well as Craigen, Sibbald required treatment for a blow to the ribs from the follow through of an Andy Dowie clearance and Nathan Austinwas also clattered routinely by the Doonhamers' backline.

Sibbald capped an excellent performance with a penalty. Pic by Michael Gillen.

Austin had found the going tough in the first half, but Sibbald's game was a vast improvement to last week's show which brought criticism from Peter Houston.

The duo combined for the penalty which made sure for Falkirk, but until that point it was still in the balance with Queens regularly having a go at Danny Rogers' goal.

But when Austin got the better of Dowie with ten minutes of the game to play he looked certain to score. But the Doonhamers' ex-Rangers defender pulled the Falkirk frontman down and, in the absence of Aaron Muirhead, Sibbaldslammed the penalty past Robinson to cap a fine performance.

Falkirk were excellent all over the park. Pic by Michael Gillen.