East Fife 0-3 Alloa Athletic - In pictures

East Fife were pushed uncomfortably closer to the relegation trap door on Saturday after Alloa struck three swift second-half goals at Bayview.

By Scott Inglis
Monday, 28th March 2022, 11:49 am
Updated Monday, 28th March 2022, 11:49 am
Danny Swanson makes his way down the right wing
Danny Swanson makes his way down the right wing

The first had echoes of the previous week at Clyde with the disappointment at its loss, while the second was from a penalty, while East Fife had two spot kick claims turned down. The third was from a deflected shot form outside the box with little apparent danger pending.

However, the reality was they added up to a 3-0 defeat, with the Fifers not creating a great deal in terms of chances for themselves.

And, with Dumbarton and Peterhead picking up points from their own matches, it’s going to be even more difficult for Stevie Crawford and his men to say in cinch League One.

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Young Jack Healy looks to make something happen late in the game

But, arithmetically, it’s still possible and Crawford said after the game he’d accepted the challenge when he came into the job, adding: “I’m going to need people digging deep – myself included.”

Once the action began, there was an early opportunity for Connor Sammon, who got a left-foot shot towards goal, despite the attention in the box of the East Fife defence, but the Alloa man’s effort went wide.

East Fife shouts for a fourth-minute penalty were waved away when Kyle Connell appeared to be felled by an elbow in the penalty area.

Danny Swanson tried a hopeful eighth-minute snapshot for East Fife which went wide.

The Alloa defence ensure there's no way through for Jamie Semple

Alloa applied a bit of pressure around the quarter-hour mark as Craig Howie blasted over from close range following a corner kick. Moments earlier, a free kick just outside the box by Stefan Scougall was blocked by the Bayview defensive wall.

On 19 minutes, Swanson showed some clever skill by controlling the ball on his chest before firing towards goal but the ball spiralled into the side netting. The veteran Fife man delivered a superb cross from the left a little later as the home side attacked but the move was foiled by an offside ruling.

Alloa ‘keeper PJ Morrison smothered a dangerous-looking cross by Connell for East Fife soon afterwards.

Jude Smith, in the East FIfe goal, dealt fairly easily with a shot from Euan Henderson as the action started to warm up ahead of half time.

Danny Denholm takes a tumble under some pressure

East Fife looked to have another penalty claim in the 57th minute when Danny Denholm went down under a challenge from Mark Durnan but play continued.

Immediately after each side made a substitution, Alloa took the lead on 62 minutes, as Kevin Cawley poked the ball home in a crowded area from close range.

Four minutes later, Scougall was brought down in the East Fife box and referee Chris Fordyce pointed to the spot. Scougall took the kick himself and made it 0-2.

Alloa scented blood after that although East Fife managed to hold them at bay – but there looked to be no way back for Stevie Crawford’s side in the 76th minute when a shot from outside the box by Henderson took a cruel deflection off teammate Steven Boyd to put the Wasps three goals to the good.

Kieran Millar comes out on top in the aerial battle

The home side fought on until the end but couldn’t produce anything to really trouble the Alloa rearguard who stood firm.

Bayview striker Kyle Connell tries to break through the Alloa lines
Ryan Blair keeps hold of possession as the Fifers try to break Alloa down. All pics by Kenny Mackay
Jude Smith plays his part as he claims an Alloa delivery