Ladbrokes Championship: Dunfermline 3 Morton 1: 07/12/19
After seven previous attempts, eighth placed Morton came to East End Park in seek of their first away point of their league campaign. They faced a Dunfermline side that had won their last four home games and as a result of a midweek victory at Ayr, now sitting in fourth place in the Championship.
With Paul Paton still out, Lee Ashcroft and Andy Ryan joined those sidelined. Lewis Martin captained the team that saw Josh Edwards return in place of Ashcroft and Ryan Scully, Miller Fenton and Stuart Morrison return to the bench.
From the side that started at Brora in the Scottish Cup replay on Tuesday evening, Morton manager David Hopkin made three changes. Reece Lyon, Lewis Strapp and Luca Colville dropped out and in came Chris Millar, Adam Livingstone and Jack Baird.
Kyle Turner kick off for the Pars attacking the goal in front of the Morton support. It was all Dunfermline for the opening minutes with Ryan Dow creating the first opportunity in the seventh minute running in from the left to chip the ball into the box but Kevin Nisbet’s back header did not fool Danny Rogers who clutched the ball.
In eleventh minute Turner prodded the ball into the Morton box from the right and when Greg Kiltie latched on to it, travelling right he cut his shot back from an angle and could only find the sidenetting.
Morton’s first attempt came on 16 minutes when Bob McHugh’s effort had the sting taken out of it by a defender and Cammy Gill has an easy task to hold. Back at the other end Aaron Comrie burst in on the right side of the box and his cut back was good for Turner to connect but he sent a great chance over the bar.
The Pars were to be awarded a penalty when Millar handled the ball in the box and when Nisbet stepped up he sent the ball to the keeper’s left. Rogers saved but the linesman medicated a retake. The Morton keeper was yellow carded for dissent and next time NISBET chose the other side and the Fifers had a 21st minute lead. 1-0
Going behind seemed to rouse the visitors and they injected some urgency into more positive play. Dunfermline were kept away from the opposition goal until 33rd minute when Turner picked out Kiltie who teed up Tom Beadling but again it was the sidenetting that was hit.
The post kept out a Kiltie header after Comrie and Dow combined on the right but other than that neither keeper was busy as the game was played in torrential rain.
The Pars had eight first half shots to Morton’s one and deserved their material lead. With it getting wetter and wetter it might be down to which team would make the fewer mistakes in the second half.
Half time: Dunfermline 1 Morton 0
The home side threatened right away with a Comrie cross, a Turner free kick and then a corner from the left that Martin purposely arrived late for. Then in 52 minutes a blocked shot rebounded for KILTIE to score against his old club. 2-0
Nicky Cadden then put over a tricky cross that Gill palmed away and the visitors’ follow up was blasted over the bar. That was Camden’s last involvement as he was then subbed by Aidan Nesbitt.
The Pars should have extended their lead in 56 minutes when Nisbet’s cut back for Beadling looked a certainty but the defence dived in and managed to block the shot. It was the next Morton sub Reece LYON who was to make a significant difference. Chris Millar has just been withdrawn when the sub smashed a shot past Gill from 20 yards out. 2-1
Turner had two efforts to try and net a third before Dow was close to converting a cross in from the right. Nisbet earned a free kick on the right perimeter and when Turner took it short to Dow the visitors blocked the Pars no.11’s shot. At the other end Devine made a telling stop on a Lyon shot.
Joe Thomson was the first Dunfermline sub replacing Kyle Turner in 72 minutes and Joe was almost a super sub making the keeper save with his first touch and then Rogers recovering to stop Kiltie’s follow up.
Two Morton corners from the left almost cost the Pars with Livingstone pumping the ball into a crowded penalty box and Grant getting the chance from four yards out that he crashed over the bar.
Into the final ten minutes and Morton were looking a dramatically different team than the one that contested the first hour. Gill pushed away a devilish dipping shot from Nesbitt in 83 and then from a quickly taken Morton corner Dow broke, evading a Nesbitt attempt to clip him and set up NISBET to find the far side of the net for a third Pars goal. The Player of the Month’s eighteenth of the season. 3-1.
There was no way back from that for the Greenock men and Thomson came close to converting a Comrie cross with an overhead kick. Three goals, three points, three wins in a week and up into third place.
DUNFERMLINE: Cammy Gill: Aaron Comrie, Danny Devine, Lewis Martin (c), Josh Edwards: Ryan Dow, Harry Cochrane, Tom Beadling (Stuart Morrison 85), Kyle Turner (Joe Thomson 72), Greg Kiltie, Kevin Nisbet.
SUBS NOT USED: Gabby McGill, Lewis McCann, Anthony McDonald, Miller Fenton, Ryan Scully (GK)
SCORERS: Nisbet (21 pen. 84), Kiltie (52)
YELLOW CARD: Edwards (19)
MORTON: Danny Rogers: Stephen Welsh (Cameron Salkeld 67), Peter Grant, Kyle Jacobs, Jim McAlister(c), Chris Millar (Reece Lyon 62), Adam Livingstone, Jack Baird, Robbie Muirhead, Bob McHugh, Nicky Cadden (Aidan Nesbitt 55).
SUBS NOT USED: John Sutton, Cameron Blues, Luca Colville, Sam Ramsbottom (GK).
SCORERS: Lyon (62)
YELLOW CARD: Rogers (21), Baird (45+1), Welsh (65), Grant (74), Nesbitt (84)
REFEREE: Steven Kirkland
WEATHER: Rain 7C
NEXT MATCH: Ladbrokes Championship: (away) v Dundee 14th January 2019, kick off 3.00pm at the Kilmac Stadium at Dens Park