Saturday 25 September 2010

Livingston 1 - 1 East Fife
HT (0 - 0)

Livingston remain at the top of the Irn-Bru Second Division despite dropping two points at home to East Fife.

Gary Bollan chose to name an unchanged side from that which picked up the win against Brechin last weekend, meaning we continued to play Robbie Winters in a supporting role behind a front two of Iain Russell and Rafa De Vita.

The early stages saw Livi create the better of the chances. A drilled cross into the box was knocked back by De Vita and Winters delicately chipped the ball over the oncoming defender before volleying towards goal - although his deflected effort spun wide of the mark. Russell was next to have a go after some neat play between De Vita and Winters saw the ball lofted over the top but the top-goal scorer failed to get enough on his shot, and Michael Brown easily saved. From this, East Fife broke up the park and really should have taken the lead. A long ball was switched to the left flank and the East Fife forward stepped inside, avoiding Craig Barr's challenge but somehow managed to curl his strike wide despite only being 7 yards out.

With half-time approaching, Russell had another chance to break the deadlock. Jason Talbot whipped a cross in and the striker’s header came off the top of the bar from all of 15 yards.

Livingston continued to press after the break and it wasn't too long before they took the lead. A defensive header from O'Byrne somehow found it's way through to Rafa De Vita who raced clear of his marker and fired the ball through the 'keeper's legs to put the Lions in front.

Tony Bullock continued his form from the Brechin match and had to be quick to react after Steven Hislop cracked a shot towards the bottom corner but the big 'keeper got down to his left and pushed the ball wide for a corner. But it wasn't to be long before East Fife did grab their equaliser, and there was very little Bullock could do to stop it. Another high ball over the top was met by Kurtis Byrne who brushed past Mick O'Byrne before bending a left foot effort away from Bully and into the bottom corner.

Both sides had late chances to win the game with Livi claiming for a penalty after Russell appeared to see his header rebound of an East Fife defender’s arm but it wasn't to be.

The undefeated start continues, and Livi still remain three points clear at the top of the league. Next up, a trip to Somerset Park to take on Ayr United.

Livingston: Bullock, C.Barr, Talbot, Sinclair, O'Byrne, Watson, Fox, Kn.Jacobs (Conway 86), Russell, Winters (B.Barr 74), De Vita
Subs Not Used: McDowall, Malone, Ky.Jacobs

East Fife: Brown, Muir, Campbell, Murdoch, Durie, Sloan (Cargill 78), Ovenstone, Byrne, Johnstone (Tansey 87), Hislop (Crawford 88), Young
Subs Not Used: Baillie, Smart

Att: 1769

Ref: I.Brines

Report by Dave Black