Labrokes League 1, Ochilview, Tuesday 20th December 2016
East Fife 1 (O’Hara 12’)
Man of the Match: Jonathan Page
East Fife XI: Goodfellow (Hurst 75’), Mercer, Slattery, Kane, Page, Kerr, Brown, Wilkie, Robinson (Insall 86’), Austin, O’Hara
Subs Not Used: Mutch, Lamont
Booked: Page, Wilkie
Stenhousemuir XI: McCabe, McCormack, Summers (Trialist 90’), Meechan, Kerr, Berry, Roy (Gilhaney 78’), Millar (Manzana-Martinez 78’), McMenamin, Furtado, Cook
Subs Not Used: Robertson, McMaster, Hamilton, McCroary
Booked: McMenamin, McCormack
Referee: Mike Roncone
East Fife made it four wins and four clean sheets in a row with a 1-0 vistory over Stenhousemuir curtesy of a 12th minute Kevin O’Hara strike. East Fife made one change to the side who overcame Peterhead on Saturday with Scott Robinson replacing the injured Tony Wallace.
The match kicked off with the rain pouring down and East Fife playing with the wind in the first half and it was the visitors who adapted quickest to the conditions. The first chance of the match came inside 5 minutes when O’Hara picked up a loose ball inside the Stenhousemuir half and played in Robinson who fired narrowly wide from the edge of the box. East Fife took the lead on 12 minutes when Jordan Austin laid the ball off for O’Hara on the edge of the box and his right-footed shot sailed past Colin McCabe into the back of the net.
Stenhousemuir had the chance to equalise on 25 minutes when the ball made its way to Colin McMenamin unmarked at the back post but the striker couldn’t control his shot. There was a moment of confusion on 36 minutes when referee Mike Roncone blew his whistle and pointed to the spot for a Stenhousemuir penalty when Jason Kerr and McMenamin challenged for the ball in the air. The decision was then changed to a drop ball after Roncone consulted with his assistant. Replays failed to clear up why the original decision was made.
East Fife started the second half the better side and O’Hara had the ball in the net for a second time when he got on the end of Kyle Wilkie’s cross but the flag was raised for offside. A good break up field by Robinson and Austin saw the latter pick out O’Hara but the striker’s shot was straight at McCabe. McCabe was keeping the home side in the game, turning Robinson’s shot behind before pulling off an excellent save to keep out Chris Kane’s header from the following corner. Stenhousemuir began to come into the game with 15 minutes to go with the best chance falling to Alan Cook who forced Ryan Goodfellow into a save before Willis Furtado’s follow-up header was cleared by Mercer. Furtado had another chance to level the game on 85 minutes following a good 1-2 with Cook but Jason Kerr was on hand to put in a great block on the 6-yard line. The East Fife defence held firm to hold on for a vital 3 points
After the match Manager Barry Smith spoke to East Fife TV:
“It’s a good victory. It was a horrible game if truth be told, it wasn’t great conditions but the boys managed the game well they dug in when they had to and we scored an excellent goal. When we did take the opportunity to pass the ball we looked sharp but obviously the second half we were against the wind and we’ve probably created a few chances that we probably could have done better with. It comes down to another clean sheet and another good hard-working performance.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from everyone at East Fife FC.
Ladbrokes League One, Bayview Stadium, Saturday 17th December 2016
East Fife 2 (Kerr 48’, O’Hara 56’)
Man of the Match: Jason Kerr
East Fife XI: Goodfellow, Mercer, Slattery, Kane, Page, Kerr, Brown, Wilkie, Wallace (Insall 66’), Austin, O’Hara
Subs Not Used: Hurst, Lamont, Mutch
Peterhead XI: Hobday, Dzierzawski (Blockley 55’), Noble, Ross, Kelleher, S Brown, Riley, Redman (Rumsby 68’), McAllister, Ferry, J Brown (McIntosh 63’)
Subs Not Used: Smith, Stevenson, Baptie, Nassor
Booked: Noble, Ross, Redman, Riley
Referee: Craig Charleston
East Fife continued their winning run with a comfortable 2-0 win against Peterhead in Barry Smith’s first game in charge. East Fife made one change to the side that beat Brechin City the previous week with Kevin O’Hara replacing the suspended Scott Robinson.
Peterhead almost opened the scoring on 7 minutes when Jordan Brown unlucky to see his header from a corner rebound off the bar. The home side’s first chance of the opening 20 minutes saw Kyle Wilkie’s shot blocked by the Peterhead defence before Fraser Hobday easily saved Tony Wallace’s follow-up. Steven Noble picked up an early booking on 25 minutes when he stopped Jordan Austin breaking forward. Chances were few and far between in the first half; East Fife’s best chance coming on 28 minutes when Jonathan Page headed narrowly over from Scott Mercer’s free kick. The last chance of the half fell to Jordan Brown but he fired well wide from 20-yards.
Whatever was said in the East Fife dressing room at half time obviously worked as they took the lead 2 minutes after the break. Mercer’s free kick from the left made its way the Jason Kerr who scored with an excellent finish at the back post. The home side grew in confidence and doubled their lead on 56 minutes. Wallace won the ball inside the Peterhead half and picked out Kevin O’Hara who fired past Hobday for his second goal of the season. Wallace hobbled off injured on 66 minutes to be replaced by Jamie Insall.
Insall had the chance to add a third goal 15 minutes from time when he was picked out by Austin but his shot from close range was pushed away by Hobday. A minute later, Page managed to flick on another Mercer free kick but the ball just skipped away from Chris Kane at the back post. Peterhead piled on the pressure towards the end of the game with the best chance falling to Nicky Riley 10 minutes from time but his shot from 20-yards bounced off the bar and behind for a goal kick. A cross from Nathan Blockley also hit the bar before Rory McAllister did have the ball in the back of the net in stoppage time but the flag was raised for off-side.
After the match Manager Barry Smith spoke to East Fife TV:
“I think it was a good overall team performance, the boys defended very well, they worked very hard. Jason (Kerr) has got a good goal and Kevin (O’Hara) finishes off well as well. You have to build on the solidity at the back, chances come along and if you take them you’ve got the opportunity to win games is much higher.”
“You can build from the back. If you’re conceding goals it is more work for the players to try and get back into the game. They defended very well and we built on that to get the two goals in the second half. We asked them to move the ball a wee bit quicker, we told them we needed to get a bit closer in the middle of the park which they did. They’re a good set of boys; I learned that on the first day I came in. It’s a great result but we must carry it on to Tuesday. We’re not getting over excited. We want to build on that performance and the previous clean sheets and move up.”
Barry Smith collects his sponsored car from Specialist Cars, Kirkcaldy.
Ladbrokes League 1, Glebe Park, Saturday 10th December 2016
Brechin City 0
East Fife 1 (Robinson 10’)
Man of the Match: Scott Robinson
East Fife XI: Goodfellow, Mercer, Slattery, Kane, Page, Kerr, Brown (O’Hara 86’), Wilkie, Wallace, Robinson, Austin (Insall 76’)
Subs Not Used: Hurst, Mutch, Smith
Brechin City XI: G Smith, Ford, Dyer, E Smith, Hill, Rodger (McCormack 52’), Trouten, Caldwell, Buchanan (Love 65’), Lynas
Subs Not Used: Dods, McLean, O’Neil
Booked: Trouten, Hill, Love
Referee: Steven Kirkland
East Fife won their first Ladbrokes League 1 match since September with a well-deserved victory against Brechin City thanks to an 11th minute Scott Robinson strike. It was a score line that didn’t reflect the performance as the visitors could have easily won by more than one goal. East Fife made two changes to the side that beat Edinburgh City on Wednesday with Jamie Insall and Kevin Smith making way for Tony Wallace and Jordan Austin.
The board of directors of East Fife Football Club are delighted to confirm Barry Smith as our new first team manager. Further details will follow later this week. Welcome to Bayview Barry.