Clyde run in to a little problem

Clyde are stunned as Richard Little fires home what proved to be Arbroaths winner.
Clyde are stunned as Richard Little fires home what proved to be Arbroaths winner.

Clyde missed out on the chance to go top of League Two after defeat at home to Arbroath on Saturday.

Jordan Kirkpatrick gave the home side the lead after eight minutes but two second half goals sealed victory for Dick Campbell’s men.

A win would have seen Clyde leapfrog leaders East Fife, who dropped points at home to Queen’s Park.

Barry Ferguson made two changes after injuries to Sean Higgins and Michael Bolochoweckyj in last Tuesday’s victory over Annan. Marvin Andrews was brought into the defence while Kirkpatrick partnered David Gormley in attack.

It was Clyde who started the brighter with Gormley and Mark McLaughlin coming close early on.

They took the lead after eight minutes when Scott McLaughlin burst from midfield to collect a Scott Linton through ball and round goalkeeper Allan Fleming.

His cutback was met by Kirkpatrick – making his debut after a loan move from Dumbarton – who volleyed into an open goal.

The Bully Wee continued to dominate though were given a scare midway through the half.

Josh Skelly got behind Mark McLaughlin and squared for Greg Rutherford but the big striker botched his attempt.

The home side then wasted a chance to take the lead shortly before half-time when Scott McLaughlin volleyed Kirkpatrick’s flick-on straight at the goalkeeper.

Dick Campbell’s side enjoyed a spell of first half possession but failed to breach the towering Clyde defence.

Both sides made first half changes due to injury. John Gemmell took to the field to replace Gormley before Arbroath brought on David Gold in place of Mark Williams.

In the second half a tiring Clyde struggled to maintain their grasp as 10 matches in 35 days clearly began to take its toll.

Much of Arbroath’s good play came down the left-hand side, with Bobby Linn and the supporting Jordan Lowdon doubling up on Clyde’s Scott Durie.

Durie was also having to contend with Skelly’s tendency to drift out to the left and brought down the Arbroath striker for a penalty in the 54th minute. Linn stepped up and fired the ball straight down the middle for the equaliser.

Minutes later the game was turned on its head.

A free-kick from Linn was fumbled by Clyde ‘keeper Marc Waters and the ball broke in the direction of Ricky Little.

His attempt to block Mark McLaughlin’s clearance hit the back of the net and gave Arbroath the lead.

Durie was then replaced by Scott McMann but the damage had already been done.

Arbroath had to withstand some pressure to preserve their lead with Kirkpatrick passing up two late chances.

Unfortunately for the home side, one drifted wide, the other hit the side netting and Arbroath left with the points.

The defeat ended a run of successive victories which Clyde had stretched to four games with a 2-1 win over Annan Athletic at Broadwood last Tuesday.

The Bully Wee started on the front foot and Chris Smith had a header diverted onto a post by Annan ’keeper Jordan Hart.

Sean Higgins, two-goal hero at East Stirlingshire the previous Saturday, went off injured and was replaced by Jamie Watson whose first contribution was to set up Clyde’s opener five minutes before the break.

Watson played in David Gormley who beat Hart with a firm low drive.

The Bully Wee could have added a second minutes later when Watson sent over a low cross but neither Scott Durie nor Scott McLaughlin could get on the end of it.

Clyde doubled their lead three minutes into the second period when Jon Paul McGovern rammed a ferocious strike in off the bar to grab his first goal for the club.

The home side claimed a penalty when Gormley appeared to be fouled in the box, but play was waved on.

Annan, needing a win to move level on points with Clyde, pulled a goal back 12 minutes from time when Matty Flynn netted from Smart Osadolor’s set-up.