SFL First Division: LIVINGSTON 0 DUNFERMLINE 1: 04/09/99
Dick Campbell brought new signing from Hibs Justin Skinner into his starting line up; Scott Thomson was out injured so Richard Huxford was the latest attempt at finding a right back and Eddie May found himself relegated to the subs bench.
The Pars supporters filled the North Stand as a large crowd greeted the teams. The late Scottish summer provided a warm afternoon matched by the heat of the encounter as the presence of Dunfermline rejects in the home side ensured the match was never going to be soft.
The first half was really all Livingston with the best chances falling to the opposition. No. 7 shot straight at Westie when being presented with a great chance in the 10th minute. Marino Keith brought out a great save from Ian Westwater eight minutes later when Gerry Britton flick on a cross from the left that also resulted in the opener.
Dunfermline’s best chance of the half came after 20 minutes when Jason Dair crossed but Smithy’s header went over the crossbar.
Gerry Britton blasted a cross passed Westie’s right hand post before the Livvy no.7 made a great break down the left to set up Keith. Fortunately Westie palmed the ball round the post for a corner.
The travelling support was far from happy with the only question being just what shade of brown one was going to use to describe our performance. But just as the first 45 were bad then the second 45 were good.
Jason Dair had a run up the left flank at the defence with two minutes gone and next an Owen Coyle cross provided Andy Tod with a headed chance that skiffed the outside of the top of the net.
Stewart Petrie had the feet taken from him on the edge of the penalty box. The referee had struggled to keep up with the direction and speed of the play all game but got the decision correct in giving a free kick instead of a penalty.
With 67 minutes on the clock the match flared up as Smith and Coughlan faced up. The Livvy player clearly raised his hands and was correctly red carded. Smith collected a yellow. Dunfermline have made a habit of finishing against 10 men this season but the advantage was short lived as a late Stewart Petrie sliding tackle earned the Par his second yellow of the game. Petrie paid dearly for his needless first half spouting that resulted in the first yellow.
Six minutes later Brian Reid hit the crossbar from a David Graham corner. Jason Dair made a run up the left again and a corner was awarded as Livingston conceded a corner. Reid and Graham had chances from the corner which was not cleared fully. Dair fired over another cross and Owen COYLE met the ball 12 yards out to send a looping header into the top right corner of the net.
Livingston had little of the second 45 and Dunfermline deserved the winner for a good second half performance.
Westie had some good saves, achieved a shut out but flapped a bit in some situations. Huxford (at times) looked pretty useful at right back but punctuated his good touches with some poor ones. New boy Skinner had a quiet game but did send in useful crosses from free kicks in both halves. David Graham injected some refreshing pace up the right and Player of the Month Coyle with his seventh goal was yet again the five star Par.
DUNFERMLINE: Westwater, Huxford, Tod, Reid, Dair;
French , Dolan (May 88), Skinner, Smith (Graham 75), Coyle, Petrie.
Sub not used: Ireland,
Scorers: Coyle (84)
Yellow Card: Petrie(20), Smith (69), Coyle (89)
Red Card: Petrie (72)
Referee J Herald (Paisley)
League Position 2nd
Next match v St Mirren (home) Bells First Division Saturday 11th September 1999
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