Forfar Athletic 3-0 East Fife

Forfar raced into a three goal lead by the break they never looked like giving up.
Forfar raced into a three goal lead by the break they never looked like giving up.

East Fife went into this game aiming to build on a positive draw with league leaders Arbroath in midweek.

But with 20 minutes played, things really couldn't have gone much worse.

By then the visitors were two goals down and had lost goalkeeper Brett Long through injury along with on-loan Dundee United defender Stewart Murdoch.

Jamie Bain already had the ball in the net for Forfar after six minutes but the goal was chopped off for a foul on Long.

The 'keeper needed treatment but chose to plough on.

Just three minutes later the hosts took the lead when Dale Hilson picked the ball out 20 yards from goal and cracked a shot beyond the injured Fife 'keeper.

Forfar could smell blood and Dylan Easton quickly added number two.

As the Fifers were preparing to restart the game both Long and Murdoch hit the deck and had to be replaced.

Daniel Terry made his debut for the club with Ross Davidson introduced for Murdoch.

East Fife managed to eventually settle and enjoyed their best spell of the game with Kevin Smith and Anton Dowds both going close.

But the hosts were gifted a third when some dithering in the East Fife defence was taken advantage of by John Baird who beat Terry.

For the second Saturday in a row East Fife trudged off the field three goals down.

Against Dumbarton the side managed to make a first of things after the interval, but there was no hint of that at Station Park.

Yes East Fife had the best of the second half, but Jim Weir's men were well drilled at the back and, apart from a Kevin Smith effort which came back off the bar, never looked like clawing back the home side.

Boss Darren Young said: "Brett getting injured probably affected the first goal although there were mistakes leading up to it.

"Overall it's really disappointing.

"The second goal we tried to show their guy wide and then he has an easy ball across the goal and they have someone running in off one of our players, showing desire and determination to score the goal.

"The third goal there's a mistake with Danny and Ross (Dunlop) who should just have cleared his lines.

"If you give anyone a three goal start it's a hard ask.

"We changed formation and changed personnel so I need to hold my hands up and ask if I got it right."