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Albion Rovers 0-1 Cowdenbeath

Albion Rovers 0-1 Cowdenbeath

By Chris Toner

Albion Rovers’ bid to pull away from the relegation playoff suffered a major setback on Saturday as they suffered a 1-0 defeat at the Reigart Stadium to bottom of the table Cowdenbeath.

An eighth-minute penalty by Fraser Mullen ensured victory for the Blue Brazil in a game which saw few clear-cut chances by either side and seven yellow cards, with the visitors reduced to ten men late on. Rovers were boosted in the second half by the return of Kyle Doherty for the first time in seven games from the bench, but could not take advantage of having an extra man on the pitch in the final minutes.

The result means that Rovers remain in ninth and are now six points clear of their bottom of the table counterparts, but do have a game in hand.

Cowdenbeath were awarded a penalty in the eighth minute after Charlie Reilly was judged to have handled the ball inside the box. Mullen scored from the ensuing spot kick, sending Cammy Binnie the wrong way.

By the 25th minute, four Rovers players and one Cowdenbeath player found their name in referee Calum Scott’s book. And Rovers would have their own penalty shout just before the half hour mark as Josh Jack felt his attempt at goal was blocked by a Cowdenbeath defender’s arm. The teams would trade half-chances to end the half as Samuel Denham made sure he beat Jack to clear the ball, while at the other end Binnie had to use his legs to clear Robert Barr’s threatening low cross.

Rovers came out looking the more threatening after the break as captain Aron Lynas’ cross bounced off the crossbar and Reilly later had a shot tipped round the post by Cameron Gill.

Doherty made his long-awaited return just after the hour mark, coming on for Max Wright and following David Carty’s 79th minute chance being dealt with comfortably by Binnie would have a chance of his own following another penalty shout as James McGowan went down, but he failed to trouble Gill.

In an afternoon where so many cards were shown, it was only inevitable that someone would be sent off and that dubious honour fell to Cowdenbeath’s Kyle Miller, who was shown a straight red for a shove on Callum Wilson.

Rovers almost took advantage of the deficit in numbers and escaped the afternoon with a point in the dying minutes as Gill was called into action twice, first to turn the ball behind from a corner, before making a terrific save from Blair Malcolm’s header from the ensuing corner.

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