SPL: DUNFERMLINE 3 KILMARNOCK 2: 31/01/98

DEBUT GOALS FROM BARNETT AND SHAW HERALD VICTORY

This game started badly for the Pars conceding a second minute goal to Jerome Varielle when Colin Miller was left in the Frenchman’s slipstream. In the match programme Bert Paton had said that it was time to make some changes but this kind of goal gifting was not in the plans.

Dave Barnett was back in the centre of defence, George Shaw started in place of Allan Moore and John Fraser came into midfield in place of Harry Curran. For the first forty minutes it seemed like the same performance that had extended a run of 9 games without a win. Ally Mitchell had two great shots saved by Westwater while Dunfermline were caught so many times offside (not always correctly) that even the stand side assistant referee’s flag fell apart. Then everything changed.

Stewart Petrie burst through and his net bursting effort forced a fine save from Meldrum in the Kilmarnock goal. From the resultant corner DAVE BARNETT put away a simple header to bring the Pars back into the game. In the next 5 minutes before the half time whistle Dunfermline created another 4 or 5 chances and could have gone in leading.

Ivo Den Bieman came on for Colin Miller at half time. The Canadian Internationalist had been barracked by the home crowd for both his poor form on the field and his reported comments about the Pars “support”.

Dunfermline failed to pick up the second half where they had finished the first. Kilmarnock seemed to be getting back into the game when Dunfermline struck again. George Shaw exchanged passes with both Petrie and Shields before releasing a defence splitting pass to ANDY SMITH. The ball was sent low past Meldrum by the Pars striker.

Nine minutes later George Shaw put the Pars further ahead but got yellow carded for running to the supporters behind the goals. With five minutes remaining Killie brought on Bagan and Hendry and immediately pulled one back through Mark Roberts. Dunfermline will be a fingernail free zone after the closing minutes as Kilmarnock tried desperately to get the equaliser. Referee Clark managed to play until 4.50 despite there being virtually no injuries.

The full time whistle was the sweetest since mid November. The difference a hard working display; confidence re-discovered and an excellent show from John Fraser in midfield. This youngster has to be allowed to make the no.6 shirt his own.

DUNFERMLINE: Westwater, Shields (Sharp 70), Miller (Den Bieman 45), Tod, Barnett, Fraser, Shaw, Robertson, Smith, French, Petrie (Bingham 78)
Scorers: Barnett (41), Smith (67), Shaw (76)
Yellow Cards: Smith, Shaw, Sharp, Bingham
Referee: K Clark (Paisley)
Attendance 4903
League Position 7th
Next match v Rangers (away) Saturday 7th February



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