Queens continued their impressive start to the season as they produced another outstanding display of quality attacking football that simply overwhelmed their visitors from Arbroath.
Dominating the game for the 90 minutes,Queens scored 6 times without reply, equalling their best ever result against Arbroath,and could have scored many more such was the control they had on the match,and in fact `keeper Lee Robinson did not have to make a single save during the game.
The starting line-up showed 2 changes to the team that began against Hibs, with Willie Gibson replacing Daniel Orsi, and Gavin Reilly starting his first league game of the season, up front in for the injured Derek Lyle. Arbroath included former Queens player Derek Holmes in their line-up alongside top scorer Darren Gribben as the top of the table visitors looked to become the first team to score a league goal against Queens this season.
Before kick-off, Queens fans were introduced to their newest signing Paul Burns,who has returned to Palmerston on an initial one year deal following his spell with Dunfermline.
Burnsy is welcomed by Chairman Billy Hewitson and manager Allan Johnstone
Queens made a bright start to the game and might have taken the lead in the opening minutes when Willie Gibson`s effort from inside the box just curled wide of the far post, and as Queens began to assume control Gibson`s pass to Danny Carmichael allowed the winger the chance to attack and after beating his man he fired his effort straight at `keeper Bullock. It was evident that Queens had carried on from where they left off on Tuesday night, and minutes later they had another chance to take the lead. A long clearance from Robinson was flicked on by Gibson into the path of Gavin Reilly and the youngster`s first time shot smacked against the foot of the far upright with the `keeper well beaten.
Queens opening dominance certainly deserved a goal, and on 17 minutes it duly arrived. After winning their first corner of the game, Chris Mitchell`s delivery was half cleared to the edge of the box where it fell kindly for Willie Gibson to smash a shot past the `keeper to score only his 2nd ever goal for Queens, and his first for the club at Palmerston.
In a rare break into the Queens half, the visitors won their first corner of the game, but after pushing their defenders forward for the set-piece, the ball was delivered high over everyone`s head and out for a goal kick, much to the annoyance of Arbroath boss Paul Sheerin who made his feelings quite clear on the touchline.Minutes later , Nicky Clark tried his luck from distance,but his shot was always curling wide of the target. Queens were knocking the ball around with pace and accuracy at this point, and once again they created another chance to extend their lead.On 35 minutes Chris Higgins played a slide rule pass into the path of Reilly just inside the box,but the`keeper produced a smart save to smother the youngster`s shot, and almost straight away Derek Young set his sights but was unable to keep his shot on target.
The relentless Queens attacking yielded further fruition when 7 minutes before the break they doubled their lead when Nicky Clark seized on a poor defensive header to round the `keeper and slot the ball into the empty net to score his 1st league goal of the season, and his 6th overall. Queens were very comfortable at this stage, although right on the stroke of half-time things might have changed when referee McKendrick awarded a penalty to Arbroath apparently for shirt pulling at a corner. The chance to get the visitors an unlikely way back into the game went to Steven Doris, but although his penalty was hit with force it was also hit too high and it smacked off and over the top of the crossbar. That was the last incident of a very one-sided first half, although Stephen McKenna picked up a yellow card for something he said to the official,presumably about the penalty award.
Nicky Clark rounds Bullock and scores - photo from Sandy Robertson
HALF-TIME QUEENS 2-0 ARBROATH
Arbroath made a change at the break with player-boss Paul Sheerin introducing himself into the game, but the 2nd period began as the first had done with Queens quick to assume control and Carmichael went close to adding a third goal but his shot flew wide. The Queens fans in the crowd of 1554 didn`t have much longer to wait for the next goal as just 6 minutes after the re-start Mitchell`s inswinging corner was flicked on at the near post, and Gavin Reilly headed home from virtually on the line at the back post. Queens continued with wave after wave of attacking football, during which time Danny Carmichael was just about unplayable as time after time he twisted defenders inside and out before setting up further scoring chances.
The visitors hardly had the ball in the Queens half, but they managed a quick counter attack after winning possession in midfield, but their break was ended by a rather reckless challenge from Kevin Holt that earned the defender a yellow card, and saw the unfortunate Currie limp off down the tunnel. The continued attacking of the Queens front players almost produced another goal as Reilly out muscled a defender and set up a chance for Clark, and minutes later Carmichael`s skill earned his marker Hamilton a booking after a rash challenge on the Queens man, and he almost grabbed a goal himself when his curled effort from inside the area was only a few feet wide of the far post. It was Carmichael`s trickery that provided Queens with their 4th goal of the game as he broke away down the right before picking out Gavin Reilly who thumped a first time effort past the diving Bullock to score his second of the game.
Gavin slams home a irst time efort past Bullock
Practically the whole of the second period was played out in the Arbroath half such was Queens total dominance of the game, and they looked like scoring every time they went forward. A free-kick from Gibson went over, and Clark created a chance for Carmichael that was blocked back into Clark`s path and his shot had the `keeper beaten but crashed against the bar as Queens looked for more goals. With 15 minutes or so left, Kevin Smith replaced Clark and almost instantly scored with his first touch, his header from another Carmichael cross going a few feet wide of the target.
Arbroath then created their one and only chance of the game when a deep cross from the left found Holmes unmarked 2 yards out, but the former Queens man could only glance his header wide of the goal. Chris Mitchell became the third Queens player to be cautioned for a foul out on the touchline, and then Dan Orsi replaced the tiring Willie Gibson with 13 minutes to go. Queens made their final change on 79 minutes when Steven Black replaced Stephen McKenna.
Queens then added goal number 5 and once again Carmichael was the creator his run and deep cross to the back post set up the easiest of chances for Kevin Smith to slot home from 4 yards, and minutes later the rout was complete when Gavin Reilly produced an excellent finish from just inside the box to score his first senior hat-trick.
Kevin Smith taps home the fifth
Gavin Reilly secures his hat-trick with the sixth goal - photo from Sandy Robertson
That was the last action of a thoroughly convincing performance from Queens, who scored 6 and could quite easily have doubled that against a team who began the day as league leaders but were well and truly thumped by a rampant Queens side. Danny Carmichael was given the sponsors man-of-the-match award as Queens ended the day on top of the table with their 100% home record intact and as the only team in Scotland not yet to concede a league goal.