Edinburgh City went into the tie on a two-game losing streak, unfamiliar territory for the Citizens who had not been in the same position since the very start of the season after falling short to Albion Rovers in the Betfred Cup then Cove Rangers in a heavy defeat – would City be able to bounce back to winning ways?
This week’s squad seen the return of Marc Laird to the squad, returning from injury last week, as well as Jordan Sinclair making his first start since returning from being out for a few weeks.
Early on in the first half, the home side showed clear signs of wanting to hit on the counter attack with a few long balls from the keeper’s hands, one of these chances leading to a shot drifting wide past the post.
Stenhousemuir started the better of the two sides in the first half but that didn’t stop the Citizens from having a couple of good chances, firstly coming from a textbook-Thomson accurate cross which found fellow defender Balatoni only to be saved comfortably. Then another chance opened up for Handling who mistimed his shot straight into the Stenhousemuir keeper’s arms.
Stenhousemuir’s direct attack struck gold as David Hopkirk controlled a ball played over the Citizen defence and slotted away past Martin in the 12th minute.
Half-time – Stenhousemuir 1-0 Edinburgh City
Early in the second half Stenhousemuir came very close with a corner which was headed onto the woodwork and half cleared out the left side of the field and picked up by Crane who showed brilliant pace to go almost the full length of the park and put Shephard through into the box who squared the ball back for Handling to easily place the ball away to level the match in the 54th minute.
After the Citizens levelled the score, confidence levels seemed to soar and they looked much the better side creating chance after chance but not seeming to find the finishing touch in the final third with chances from Laird, Shepherd, Crane and Harris all being stopped by the Stenhousemuir no. 1.
Eventually City broke through with a simple move from back to front with only a few passes needed to breakdown the Stenhousemuir defence putting Shepherd through on goal once again to almost be denied again but the rebound from his initial attempt fell straight to him which he happily tapped home in the 78th minute to secure the 3 points for Edinburgh City.
Full Time – Stenhousemuir 1-2 Edinburgh City
MAN OF THE MATCH
This week’s man of the match was nominated by sponsors Hunter Wealth Management and was Edinburgh City goal scorer, Scott Shepherd.
Stirling Albion (H) Saturday 1 February 2020