Match Report - By Steven Mew
City opened up their Premier Sports Cup campaign yesterday afternoon with David Martindale’s Livingston side proving too strong for City in the Glebe Park sunshine.
Despite defeat, the City supporters in attendance could certainly take heart from the performance against a side that finished in the top six of the Premiership last season.
With Iain Davidson out suspended and a squad rebuild still ongoing, City boss Andy Kirk was only able to name 2 substitutes. He handed competitive debuts to no fewer than six players with Jack Wills, Jamie Bain, David Cox, Murray Mackintosh, Garry Wood and Sean Docherty all making their first starting berths.
The game got off to the worst possible start for City as they found themselves behind within the opening minute. Jaze Kabia’s corner from the left hand side wasn’t dealt with by the City defence and TOM PARKES was on hand to volley home from six yards out.
Despite this early setback and the visitors having much of the possession, a well-drilled City side limited the Lions to a couple of half chances for the remainder of the half.
City started the second half brightly, however it was Livingston that gave themselves some breathing space shortly after the hour mark.
Again it was an entirely avoidable goal from a City perspective as they failed to deal with another set-piece. Substitute Josh Mullin swung in a corner for AYO OBILEYE who lost his marker to head home.
City’s first real opportunity of the game arrived after 66 minutes when David Cox whipped in an inviting ball for the unmarked Murray Mackintosh however he was unable to guide his effort on target with the goal at his mercy.
Almost immediately up at the other end, Livi almost put the game to bed with a third. Former Aberdeen striker Bruce Anderson got behind the City defence and although he was denied by a fine save from Jack Wills, the danger wasn’t over as the ball sat up kindly for James Penrice who somehow headed over from a few yards out.
Although it will go down as a glaring miss from Penrice, credit must go to Luc Bollan who did just enough to put off the left back.
Andy Kirk made use of his two substitutions with Evan Galasso replacing Rory Currie on 64 minutes. Ten minutes later, new signing Marc Scott came on to make his debut for his hometown club, replacing the tireless Kieran Inglis in midfield.
With six minutes remaining, City had a glorious chance to half the deficit. Sean Docherty’s throw in from the right hand side was knocked on by Garry Wood into the path of David Cox who dragged his shot narrowly wide of goal.
With the home side understandably tiring against full-time opposition in the muggy heat, the visitors wrapped up the win with a third in stoppage time. With City temporarily down to 10-men due to Jamie Bain receiving treatment, Livi took full advantage as Alan Forrest scampered down the left flank before fizzing a low ball into the box for JACKSON LONGRIDGE to tap home.
Overall, City gave a good account of themselves against an established Premiership side. Next up is a trip to face Raith Rovers on Tuesday evening.