Match Report

Queens continued their inevitable march towards the 2nd division title this afternoon after they notched up their 21st league win of the season following victory over bottom of the table Albion Rovers at a cold, but sunny Palmerston.

After a first period in which Queens struggled to break down a stubborn visiting defence, a goal late in the half helped settle any anxieties,and although it took until the final 15 minutes for Queens to complete the scoring, the outcome was never really in doubt.

Following last weekend`s impressive victory at Stranraer, boss Allan Johnston decided to recall skipper Chris Higgins after his one game suspension, with Ryan McGuffie making way for him. Former Rangers, and Queens player Marvin Andrews, was included in defence for the visitors, as Rovers who had only collected one away win all season, arrived in Dumfries on a run of 6 consecutive league defeats.

Ten minutes before kick-off, Queens `keeper Lee Robinson was presented with a memento after he made his 100th appearance for the club in the game at Stranraer last Saturday, a game which saw Lee add another clean sheet to his total.

Lee Rbbinson receives his 100 game award from Chairman Billy Hewitson

The game began with Queens attacking from the start and they might have gone ahead as early as the 2nd minute when Chris Mitchell and Paul Burns exchanged passes down the right wing, with Burns` driven cross being just to far ahead of the on rushing Nicky Clark. With Queens taking the game to their opponents, a run and shot from the edge of the penalty area from Derek Young was only just wide of the far post. After just 6 minutes following a free-kick, Clark`s attempt to add to his season`s goal tally almost paid off, but his shot from Mitchell`s cleverly disguised set-piece, was blocked by Andrews. Table topping Queens began the day a massive 49 points ahead of their visitors, and having scored more than 3 goals in twelve of their league games so far, it was already looking as though the visiting defenders were going to be in for a difficult afternoon as Queens controlled the opening stages of the game. It wasn`t hard to see why the visitors had failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their 11 league games away from Cliftonhill this season, and some excellent close control saw Danny Carmichael skip past 3 defenders before slightly over hitting his final pass which allowed Rovers `keeper McGinley the chance to beat Clark to the loose ball.

Burns squares the ball across goal

After an opening period that was virtually all directed toward the visitors goal, the away side finally had a spell of possession that might have seen them take the lead but for some excellent defending by Higgins, who was on hand to make a crucial tackle to thwart Winters. The visitors then won the game`s first corner after Derek Young lost possession in the middle of the park, but the set piece was easily dealt with by the Queens defence. On 25 minutes, Kevin Holt, and Danny Carmichael, combined down the left to create a chance for Clark, but as the striker cut inside he was fouled right on the edge of the penalty area to give Queens a free-kick in a central position. The striker stepped up himself to drive a low shot past the wall, and unfortunately just past the far post as well. That was the best clear cut chance from either side, and although Queens were having plenty of the ball, the visitors were defending well and making it very hard for Queens to find a way through by denying them the space to play in.

With 10 minutes of the first half left, Paul Burns and Danny Carmichael swapped wings in search of finding a way through the visitors back-line, and a few moments afterwards Carmichael`s cross almost fell kindly to Derek Lyle in the 6-yard box, but the ball bobbled away from him and the chance had gone. With the half almost at an end, a long ball upfield from Durnan was repelled at force by Rovers centre-back Marvin Andrews, and when seconds later, Durnan tried the same long ball, this time it turned out to a perfect pass as the ball evaded the jumping Andrews and fell nicely into the path of Derek Lyle who lifted the ball over the onrushing McGinley to score his 11th league goal of the campaign. The goal was probably just about deserved on the balance of play, although having defended so well for almost the entire first 45 minutes, the visitors would have been very disappointed to lose a goal so late in the half.

Lyle chips McGinley to open the scoring



Queens started the second half brightly and forced their first corner of the contest a minute into the half. Dan Carmichael`s delivery going deep to the far post where Durnan was able to head the ball back into the danger area, but `keeper McGinley gathered under no pressure.

After tidying up a rare break from Albion, Queens launched a lightning quick break that so nearly produced a classic goal. Lee Robinson`s quick throw sent Carmichael away down the right with Mitchell on the overlap, Carmichael`s pass to Mitchell allowed the full-back to cross on the run and his pass was met by a powerful header from Clark that was only just a foot or so too high. The first yellow card of the game was shown to Albion`s Russell on 52 minutes for a foul on halfway, and soon afterwards, Robinson had to be alert to save well from Marriot`s drive from the edge of area, diving to his left to gather the shot.

Just short of the hour mark, a foul on Lyle - which led to the striker having to hobble off - saw Queens awarded another free-kick in a similar position to the one they had in the first half, although perhaps a few yards further back. This time it was Mitchell and not Clark who had the effort,with the full-back`s shot deflecting off the wall and out for a corner. Minutes later, leading scorer Clark did exceptionally well to get the better of two defenders before seeing a decent effort from a tight angle land on the roof of the net. Although Derek Lyle had managed to return to the game following the foul on him, he was clearly uncomfortable and was replaced by Gavin Reilly after 61 minutes.

Another free-kick followed for Queens after Paul Burns was sent flying, with the offender Reid, becoming the second player to be cautioned, and from the set-piece, Durnan  got on the end of Carmichael`s cross but could only direct his header straight at the `keeper. Minutes later it was Carmichael`s turn to be on the receiving end of a rather crude challenge, and this time Innes joined his team-mates in the referee`s notebook. Queens made their second change on 71 minutes when Derek Young was replaced by Ryan McGuffie who moved to right back with Chris Mitchell moving into midfield.

Danny frustrates the Albion defence

With 14 minutes to play, Queens doubled their lead. A break down the right led to Clark winning a corner, and from Mitchell`s delivery, Durnan`s header came back off a defender and dropped nicely for Nicky Clark to sweep the ball home from close range to net his 20th league goal of the season. With the game entering the last 10 minutes, Queens added a third goal, and once again it followed another set-piece. Albion gave away yet another free-kick some 8-yards outside of their penalty area, and Mitchell`s fierce curling drive was only parried upwards by `keeper McGinley before being bundled over the line by Mark Durnan. Whether or not the ball had already crossed the line is up for debate, but it did appear that the big centre-back was last to get a touch.

Clark slams the ball home for number two

Mark Durnan bundles in the third


Queens made their third and final change with 7 minutes remaining when Kevin Smith came on for Nicky Clark as the game drifted towards the full time whistle. Sponsors named Chris Mitchell as their m-o-m, who picked up the award for the second home game running, and with the news coming through that Alloa had also been beaten, the home fans in the crowd of 1520 left the ground knowing that the lead had been extended once again.

So it`s now a run of 10 league wins from the last 11 games, 21 league wins in total, and now 21 points clear at the top of the table. The `Fat Lady` is slowly starting to warm up her vocal chords!!!

  • Robinson

  • Mitchell

  • Durnan

  • Higgins

  • Holt

  • Burns

  • Young


  • McKenna

  • Carmichael

  • Clark

  • Lyle


  • Atkinson

  • Reilly


  • Smith


  • McGuffie


  • Black

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For Real Time Updates Go To Our Updates Page
14:33 Howdy folks and welcome to sunny Palmerston as Queens host bottom side Albion Rovers.
14:34 Today`s teams:
14:35 Queens: 1 Robinson 2 Mitchell 3 Holt 4 Durnan 5 Higgins 6 Young 7 Carmichael 8 McKenna 9 Lyle 10 Clark 11 Burns
14:36 Subs: 14 Reilly 15 Smith 16 McGuffie 17 Black 12 Atkinson (gk)
14:38 Albion Rovers: 1 McGinley 2 Reid 3 Russell 4 Innes 5 Andrews 6 Donnelly 7 Dallas 8 Marriott 9 Trialist 10 Sally 11 Phillips
14:38 Subs: 12 Walker 14 Thomson 15 Howarth 16 Green 17 Trialist (gk)
14:43 And today`s whistler is Euan Anderson assisted by flagwavers Joseph Lawson and Rodney Marshall.
14:48 Today`s teams have met twice this season already with Queens winning 1-0 at Palmerston in August and 3-0 at Albion in January.
14:54 As you know Queens have been on fire recently and are unbeaten at home whilst Albion are yet to win this year and have lost their last six.
14:56 Albion have two trialists in their squad today. No. 9 is former Aberdeen striker Robbie Winters and No.17 is goalkeeper Daniel Tobin.
14:59 The weather is looking good here in Dumfries today and the pitch looks to be in decent nick so we should be in for some good football.
2 min Almost a goal within the opening seconds as Burns powers into the area and lays it across the goal. Nobody there and Albion survive.
5 min Queens have lined up in a 4-4-2 formation with Lyle and Clark up front, Carmichael on the left wing and Burns on the right. Albion are 4-4-2
7 min Another decent chance for Queens as Mitchell disguises a free-kick and cuts it back to Clark on the penalty spot but his shot is blocked.
9 min Another Mitchell freekick from the right causes mayhem in the Albion defence as he drops it into the danger zone but they scramble clear.
12 min Excellent play from Carmichael as the wee man jinks past three defenders and plays in Clark but his pass is cut out by the onrushing keeper.
21 min Great tackle Higgins. Albion have just had their best spell of possession in the match and it ends as Winters is nearly in but for Higgins.
22 min So far Queens have had the better of the play with most of it coming in Albion`s half but the away side will be happy with the game so far.
24 min Dangerous free-kick for Queens right on the edge of the box in a very central position...
25 min It`s Nicky Clark who takes it and he hits it low but just wide of the keeper`s left-hand post. Close.
36 min The early energy from Queens has lessened a bit lately and Albion have come into the game. They will be very happy with the game so far.
40 min A couple of nearly moments for Queens as Lyle has two dangerous crosses from the right cleared. We are yet to have a shot on target...
42 min GOAL QUEENS! Lyle the scorer
43 min At last a shot on target! It comes from a long ball over Andrews` head and Lyle nips in to lift it over the keeper and into the corner.
Half Time HALF TIME - QOS 1:0 Albion
Half Time A pretty turgid first half as Queens struggled to find a way through an organised Albion defence until Lyle`s strike on half-time.
Half Time Lyle`s goal should hopefully set us up for a much more open second half and allow Queens` pacey frontmen space to attack. Hopefully...
Half Time No changes at half-time and we are ready to go.
Half Time No changes at half-time and we are ready to go.
48 min Good chance Clark! Nice approach play from Queens gets Mitchell in down the right wing and he picks out Clark but his header is over the bar
52 min Nice save Robinson. Albion have their first shot on the Queens goal and its a nice strike from Marriott but Robinson gets his body behind it
57 min Queens have another free-kick on the edge of the Albion area but Derek Lyle has stayed down following the challenge.
59 min Just over! Chris Mitchell this time steps up and his shot clips the top of the wall before going over. Lyle is back on the pitch.
60 min Great play from Nicky Clark as he beats 2 defenders to the ball and goes to chip the keeper but the ball lands on top of the net. Almost.
60 min Substitution : Reilly on for Lyle
64 min Yellow Card : Albion`s right-back Alan Reid is booked for a late challenge on Paul Burns.
65 min From the freekick Carmichael puts in the cross and Durnan meets it with a good header but hits it straight at the `keeper.
67 min Yellow Card : Albion`s Peter Innes is skinned by Dan Carmichael and takes him down.
70 min Substitution : McGuffie on for Young
75 min GOAL QUEENS! Clark the scorer
77 min Chris Mitchell whips in the corner from the right, Durnan flicks it on and Clark bundles home inside the 6 yard box for his 20th league goal
80 min GOAL QUEENS! Durnan the scorer
83 min Chris Mitchell smashes a free-kick goalwards and the keeper can`t get it behind before Durnan bundles it in. Game over.
83 min Substitution : Smith on for Clark
16:47 FULL TIME - QOS 3:0 Albion
16:50 A bit of a struggle today for Queens but their class shown through in the end putting them 21 points clear with eleven games remaining.