By Euan Wood
East Fife defeated Clyde 3-1 at the Broadwood Stadium to go level on points with fourth in League One as Nathan Austin netted on his return to the Bayview side.
It was a lively opening fifteen minutes with both sides having their fair share of chances on goal. Clyde striker David Goodwillie almost found the target in the first minute after an in-swinging cross found the experienced forward yards from goal, but his close-range header was brilliantly saved by Brett Long.
The visitors opened the scoring on the stroke of half-time after a quick counter-attack allowed Austin through on goal. The striker made no mistake as he coolly slotted his strike past David Mitchell into the bottom left corner as he hit the net on his second East Fife debut.
Minutes into the second half, Clyde were denied a penalty in what looked like a clear foul on Goodwillie. The striker drove at pace past the East Fife defence and appeared to be impeded by Craig Watson, but the referee waved play on, despite Goodwillie’s protests.
East Fife would double the scoring minutes later. Ryan Wallace’s whipped corner from the right-hand side was superbly met by Danny Denholm, whose looping header flew over the goalkeeper and into the top right corner to put East Fife 2-0 up.
The second goal clearly rocked the home side as East Fife were able to take control of the second half. They would then add a third on the 70th minute, a beautifully chipped cross from the right-hand side found Ryan Wallace unmarked in the box and the forward powered his header into the top corner.
Clyde would score a late consolation minutes from full time. A long ball to Goodwillie was superbly taken by the forward who brushed off the opposing defenders to fire his strike past the keeper but it wasn’t enough to stop the Bully Wee going bottom in League One. Here are three things we learned.
First away win for Young
Darren Young’s East Fife earned their first away win of the season with a dominant display. Despite Clyde starting the brighter of the two sides, East Fife grew into the game and were deserving of their first three points on the road with brilliantly taken goals.
Austin back with a goal
Local legend Austin was back with a goal in his first appearance since returning to the East Fife on loan. In three years at Bayview between 2013 and 2016, Austin netted 43 goals in 107 appearances, and was part of their League Two title-winning side in the 2015/16 campaign.
Signing on a short-term loan from Lowland League Kelty Hearts, Austin showed his talent with the first goal of the game.
With this result, Danny Lennon’s side find themselves at the bottom of the table with one win in their last four matches. Despite looking lively in the opening phases of play, Clyde allowed East Fife to take control.
Lennon’s side have two games in hand on ninth place Forfar, but with a whopping 10 games at least to come inside a month, it’s going to be a tough spell for Clyde.
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