Match Report - By Steven Mew
A lacklustre display against Annan Athletic at Galabank yesterday afternoon saw City slip 8 points adrift at the foot of League 2.
The damage was done in the first half as the home side netted three without reply and left City with a mountain to climb if they are to avoid being club 42.
It was a performance which in many ways mirrored the Albion Rovers game last weekend, with the opposition simply looking hungrier on the day.
There were two changes to the side that were edged out by Edinburgh City in midweek as Sean Slaven came in for the injured Rory Currie whilst Chris McKee returned from suspension at the expense of Scott Reekie who dropped to the bench.
City threatened first within the first couple of minutes when Bobby Barr’s precise cross was met by Chris McKee but the on-loan Rangers youngster could only head straight at the keeper.
Michael Paton’s side have been slow starters in recent matches and so it would prove again as Annan opened the scoring after just 6 minutes. A cross swung in from the left appeared to catch Hutton out as the ball came off the bar and AIDAN SMITH was first to react to knock into the net from a yard out.
City were close to pulling themselves level on the quarter hour mark. Chris McKee whipped in an inviting cross for Adam Devine who did everything right but his powerful downwards header was palmed away by Mitchell in the Annan goal.
Midway through the half David Hutton made a fine save to keep out an effort from Aidan Smith whilst at the other end, Bobby Barr fired wide of the near post.
The hosts went on and doubled their advantage on the 37 minute mark. NATHAN FLANAGAN was sent scampering down the right wing and he cut inside, beating two defenders before lashing into the top corner.
Things would get worse for City on the stroke of half time as Annan further added to their advantage, effectively ending the game as a contest. A neat interchange inside the box ended with TONY WALLACE tapping home a cutback with the City defence all at sea.
City did tighten up in the second period but were unable to grab the goal which would given them a glimmer of hope.
On the hour mark Bobby Barr was teed up by McKee in the box but he saw his volley crash off the crossbar. A minute later, Barr again came close with a shot from range which went narrowly wide.
Connor Coupe, who came on as part of a triple substitution ten minutes from time threatened when he made his way into the box following a fine run but saw his shot blocked.
A minute later, City were reduced to 10 men when Abdul Osman received a red card for pulling down an opponent on the half-way line.
With the man advantage, Annan looked to put the icing on the cake in the closing stages and David Hutton made a fine save to deny Christie two minutes from time.