Brechin City Football Club

Glebe Park, Brechin, Angus DD9 6BJ

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Airdrie United 6 Brechin City 0

Match Report - By Steven Mew

Brechin travelled to a bitterly cold Excelsior Stadium to take on an Airdrie side hovering in mid-table. Brechin had yet to break their duck in the league and City fans were hoping the side could produce an early Christmas present…a win for the first time since July and their first in the league. City had played Airdrie earlier in the season at Glebe Park, which ended in a share of the spoils despite City dominating for large spells.

Despite some injuries clearing up before this match, Ian Campbell still had quite a few players unavailable. Gary Bollan was suspended after receiving his marching orders at home to Hamilton last week-end for dissent to the linesman. Steve Hamilton, Alex Burns, Paul Deas and Steven Hampshire all looked set to miss out, but the latter started on the bench.

Airdrie were without the suspended Brian McPhee and Stephen Docherty, while Gary Twigg was still recovering from ankle ligament damage. Midfielder Martin Hardie was also set to miss this match after his red card last week against Stranraer, but after a hearing with the SFL committee on Friday the red card was withdrawn, and the committee also didn’t see the tackle to be a yellow card offence either, so a booking was also taken away from his records.

Airdrie had the first real chance of the match just a few minutes in when David Dunn’s shot hit the top of the stand after some good build-up work. It was then Brechins chance to have a go for goal at the other end. Paul Ritchie nodded the ball down for Charlie King whose volley was deflected wide for a corner, but the corner came to nothing.

City then nearly conceded a calamitous opener. Scott Walker headed the ball back for Craig Nelson but the header was a little too strong and as the ball looked to be going out, ‘Nelly’ stupidly palmed the ball back into play to the feet of an Airdrie attacker, but Nelson did well to block the effort from an acute angle. From the resulting corner, Airdrie once again came very close to the opening goal. The in-swinging cross hit off the back of Gerry Britton’s head and as the ball looked to be sailing into the far corner of the net, Craig McEwan was on hand to head the ball off the line to save Gerry’s blushes.

Airdrie were awarded a free kick about 25 yards from goal after a reckless challenge on an Airdrie attacker. The initial shot was blocked by the wall but the ball fell kindly to a white shirt in the box, but his shot hit the side netting.

The diamonds then took a deserved lead just a few minutes short of the half hour mark. Willie McLaren threaded a ball forward for Bryan Prunty, who swivelled on the ball and struck a shot on the turn into the far corner to give Nelson absolutely no chance. Airdrie continued to pile on the pressure and Bryan Prunty came close again minutes later but his shot was well tipped over by Craig Nelson.

City soaked up all the pressure however, and went up the field and came close to getting an equaliser against the run of play. Some good work down the left by Charlie King ended up in a floating cross to the back post which was headed powerfully towards goal by Gerry Britton, but a defender was on hand to deny the striker with a goalline clearance at the right end.
The last real action of the second half was a chance for Airdrie, but David Dunn’s shot from 30 yards ended up in the stand.

In the second half, Airdrie pushed immediately for a second goal and found it just two minutes after the break. Stephen McDougall’s shot was well tipped round the post by Craig Nelson but from the resulting corner, Bryan Prunty was once again on hand to finish well from inside the box.

Brechin didn’t give up however, and came agonisingly close to pull a goal back just minutes later. Gerry Britton neatly laid the ball off for Charlie King who struck the outside of the post with his powerful shot. Gerry Britton himself also came close but his volley went wide of the post after some panicky defending by the home side.

Airdrie made the game safe on the hour mark when they scored a third goal. Martin Hardie’s effort from a McDougall cross was well saved by Craig Nelson but Hardie made no mistake from the rebound to give City an uphill task.

It was certainly not proving to be City’s day as Gerry Britton squandered an excellent chance shortly after. Gerry was put clean through on goal and with no Airdrie defenders in sight, Britton dallied on the ball and sent his effort miserably past the post when a striker of his experience should have scored without much effort.

Airdrie added a fourth goal 18 minutes from time when a low inviting cross was met by Martin Hardie in front of goal, who rifled the ball into the net. City almost conceded an almost identical goal minutes later but this time a cross was screwed wide by an Airdrie attacker.

Airdrie looked as if they were going to score every time they went forward with City’s defence shredded apart. The diamonds added another goal to the tally when a cross from the right hand side was headed into the net by Willie McLaren, with no Brechin defenders within yards of the talented midfielder.

Brechin did try to play some football in the closing stages and came close to a consolation goal when Gerry Britton’s lay-off was struck wide by substitute Darren Smith. Minutes later Gerry Britton went for goal but his shot went straight into the arms of Stephen Robertson.

Airdrie rounded off a miserable day for Brechin four minutes from time when Martin Hardie completed the rout with his hat-trick.

Overall, an embarrassing display from Brechin who tried to play football, but were far too often ripped apart by the Airdrie front line and a mixture of terrible defending and awful finishing gave Airdrie a comfortable win on a plate.

City now have Clyde at home on Boxing Day, a reminder to City fans that this game is a 2:00pm kick off.

Other Results - Bell's League Division 1

Clyde 1 Stranraer 0

Clyde take all 3 points thanks to a late, late winner at Broadwood.

Hamilton Academical 2 Ross County 1

Ross County slip to their third successive defeat.

St Mirren 0 St Johnstone 0

Honours even between the two Saints at Love Street.


17 December 2005
Penny Cars Stadium
Attendance: 1106
Bryan Prunty 27
Bryan Prunty 47
Martin Hardie 59
Martin Hardie 72
Willie McLaren 76
Martin Hardie 86

Brechin City

1 Craig Nelson
2 Craig McEwan
3 Stuart Callaghan
4 David White
5 Scott Walker
6 Ally Mitchell
7 Charlie King
8 Kevin Byers
9 Paul Ritchie
10 Gerry Britton
11 Grant Johnson
12 Steve Hampshire
14 Steven Ferguson
15 Darren Smith
16 Craig Winter
17 John Hillcoat


  • On: Steve Hampshire
    Off: Paul Ritchie ( 60 )
  • On: Craig Winter
    Off: Craig McEwan ( 73 )
  • On: Darren Smith
    Off: Kevin Byers ( 75 )

Airdrie United

1 Stephen Robertson
2 Stephen McKenna
3 Paul Lovering
4 Neil McGowan
5 Alan McManus
6 Martin Hardie
7 Stephen McDougal
8 Stephen McKeown
9 Bryan Prunty
10 David Dunn
11 Willie McLaren
12 Fraser Coyle
14 Graeme Holmes
15 Kevin Barkey
16 Sandy Stewart
17 Lee Hollis


  • On: Graeme Holmes
    Off: David Dunn ( 71 )
  • On: Fraser Coyle
    Off: Stephen McKenna ( 75 )
  • On: Kevin Barkey
    Off: Stephen McKeown ( 80 )