First loss tough one to take

Queen of the South 1

Brechin City 0

Brechin City suffered their first league defeat under Ray McKinnon when they travelled to face leaders Queen of the South, writes Amanda Taylor.

City will consider themselves unlucky not to have earned at least a draw as they had a number of chances throughout the game, but the Doonhamers just had the edge as they extended their lead at the top of league to nine points.

After just seven minutes, City had a chance to take the lead when Kurtis Byrne prepared to tee up Andy Jackson, but Queens’ defender, Chris Higgins, was quick to clear the danger.

Michael Andrew was making his first appearance in goal since Ray McKinnon joined the club, and he proved his call up was worth it when he made a great save in the 16th minute to deny Gibbons, before then denying Dan Carmichael three minutes later.

However, Queens kept applying the pressure and it paid dividends in the 21st minute when Carmichael scored the only goal of the game. A Derek Lyle pass set Nicky Clark up to run down the wing and Clark’s cut back was slotted home by Carmichael.

Jonathan Stewart had a chance to pull Brechin level in the 34th minute, but the homesters were somehow able to keep out his effort, with ‘keeper Robinson gathering the ball at the second attempt.

David McKenna came on for Craig Molloy at the start of the second half. His appearance saw a great chance for Brechin in the 54th minute when he cut inside and fired a shot in which was heading for the top corner of the goal, but Robinson was able to make the save, and Jackson was unable to connect with the spilled ball.

Queens had the ball in the net for the second time in the 75th minute, but Nicky Clark was flagged for offside.

Two chances near the end - a missed header from Alan Trouten and a chance for Scott Dalziel - could have handed City a draw, but luck just wasn’t on their side.

Speaking after the match, manager Ray McKinnon said: “I think we deserved something out of that game. We were in the game for 90 minutes. We had a couple of chances in the first half and two or three in the second half, so we’re really disappointed not to take anything from the game.

“It is great that we are creating these opportunities and we are stilling playing at 90 minutes and trying to win the game.

“We have been winning games and doing really well and you can see that on park. That’s not the Brechin side that got beat 3-0 by Queen of the South at the start of the season, that’s a completely different side. So the positives are there for us and we are really pleased with that.”