Match Report

Queens run in this seasons Betfred Cup competition ended this afternoon when SPL side St.Johnstone came out on top after an entertaining game needed extra-time to decide the outcome. The result was hugely disappointing for Queens as for a large part of the game they dominated proceedings, and with a touch more good fortune it could well have been their name entering into the draw for the last 8 of the competition.

VIP Line Up

Having rested several first team players for the Irn-Bru cup game in midweek, Queens returned to full strength as they adopted a 4-2-3-1 formation with Stephen Dobbie leading the attack. Visitors St.Johnstone included two players very familiar to Queens fans, as former loan players, Zander Clark, and Jason Kerr both started.

Queens got the game underway and made a very impressive start and an early run from Andy Stirling created the first chance for Stephen Dobbie who after a weaving run, found Clark well placed to turn away his low drive. The home side were forced into a very early change after only 4 minutes when Callum Fordyce pulled up, and with Owen Bell replacing him, Michael Doyle dropped back into the centre of the defence alongside Callum Semple. The away side had their first attempt of the contest on 9 minutes when Semple`s headed clearance fell to Davidson, and his shot on the half volley flashed just wide of the right post. 
One injured centre back looks on as another makes an early exit
Queens were starting to settle into the game with Lyndon Dykes linking the play well, and they worked a good opening following a neat passing move that was started by Bell and ended with a corner as Dobbie`s attempt to find Dykes with a return pass was cleared for the set-piece. Gary Harkins` delivery into the box from the corner was cleared, and when it fell to Kyle Jacobs some 15-yards from goal,his first time shot finished just wide of the target.
The away contingent in the crowd of 1652 were on their feet on 18 minutes cheering what they thought was the opening goal after Kerr had glanced in a free-kick from Craig, but the assistant`s flag was raised for offside and the effort was quite rightly ruled out. Moments later Queens were presented with a half chance when a back pass from Shaughnessy was short, but Dobbie was not quite able to reach the ball before `keeper Clark who blasted the ball to safety. A run and shot from Stirling was deflected for a corner as Queens continued to look the most likely team to make the breakthrough. However against the run of play, it was the away side who broke the deadlock on 27 minutes. A cross from Foster was initially well defended by Queens, but a slight hesitation saw Davidson regain possession just outside the box and whether or not his effort was on target is debatable, but Watt was lurking unmarked in front of goal and turned the ball in.
The goal was harsh on Queens but they didn`t let the setback affect their play and they had a great chance to gain parity when Harkins broke into the box and instead of shooting he elected to slip the ball  across the six-yard box where both Dobbie and Dykes left the ball to each other and watched on in disbelief as Foster ran in to clear. The set-piece caused further problems for the Saints and it took an excellent save from Clark to keep out a low drive from Jacobs.
Once again following a period of pressure from Queens, the visitors almost doubled their lead when Kennedy got in behind and pulled the ball back across goal for Davidson, but thankfully for Queens he miss-hit his shot and Alan Martin managed to keep the ball out. As Queens continued to push for an equaliser Foster`s poor headed clearance fell nicely for Dykes, but his shot went well wide of the target. The striker more than made up for that miss minutes later when as the game entered it`s one minute of stoppage time the goal that Queens deserved finally arrived. A long ball forward was flicked on by Lyndon Dykes and the striker reacted quickly to his own touch and fired a half-volley past the motionless Clark. There was hardly time for the game to re-start before referee Robertson brought an end to what was a decent half from Queens, a half during which they certainly deserved to leave the pitch on level terms.
Dykes strikes
Goal celebration
The second half started with Queens carrying their first half momentum forward and when Stirling, Dykes and Dobbie combined well in the opening minutes, Dobbie`s rising effort didn`t miss the target by much. They continued to press forward and a quick counter attack led by Harkins saw the midfielder almost pick out Dobbie but his final pass was slightly over-hit. The game was now starting to become stretched and gaps began to appear, but neither side could take any advantage, and although several half chances arose, both `keepers were short on work.
With 20 minutes to go a snap shot from distance by Kennedy crashed against the far post, and as the away team just started to dominate play, Scott Mercer became the first player to be booked following a poor challenge on Kennedy.
On 76 minutes from out of nowhere, Queens so very nearly went ahead for the first time. Andy Stirling collected the ball just inside the Saints half and after an unchallenged pacy run took him to the edge of the box, he produced a wonderful curling effort that beat Clark all the way, but frustratingly crashed against the bar. With extra-time looking likely, the visitors pushed for a winner and Watt drew a smart save from Martin before a run and cross from Kennedy was crying out to be tapped home, but no St.Johnstone player could make up the ground.
Stirling is a width away from the plastic coated aluminium post to winning the game for Queens
Neither side could find a winner during the final few minutes and so the game moved to extra-time.
After starting both halves in `normal` time on the front foot, Queens appeared to be a little slower in getting to grips with the extra period, and it was St.Johnstone who started better, and 6 minutes into the period they got their noses in front. A quick break down the left was led by Watt and when he was allowed time to whip in a cross, his delivery was swept beyond Martin by Wright from 6-yards out. Connor Murray replaced Owen Bell as Queens searched for a leveller, and then a rash challenge saw Jordan Marshall became the second Queens player to be booked for a foul on Wright, but the tie then swung even more towards the SPL team just before the end of the first half of extra time when Watt scored for the second time. 
Saints take lead in extra-time
Queens were down but certainly not out, and they continued to press and try to find a way back into the game,  Dykes had a shot saved, and Dobbie fired just wide,but they were to be rewarded for their pressure when a foul on Stephen Dobbie gave them a penalty which the striker duly converted. One final chance fell to Queens when they were awarded a free-kick midway inside their own half, but from Alan Martin`s long delivery into the box the ball wouldn`t fall for any Queens player, and as the ball was launched forward by the Saints defence, a poor, under hit back pass from Doyle presented substitute Callum Hendry with the easiest of chances to score his first senior goal and send the visitors into the last 8.
Dobbie nets the penalty
All in all a great effort from Queens who more than matched their higher league opponents for large spells of the game and there was little to choose between the teams in the initial 90 minutes and on another occasion, it could easily have been us who made it into the last 8.

  • Martin

  • Mercer

  • Fordyce


  • Semple

  • Marshall

  • Doyle

  • Jacobs

  • Stirling

  • Dykes

  • Harkins

  • Dobbie
    1 (p)


  • Leighfield

  • Bell


  • Murray



  • Exley

  • Gourlay

  • Tremble

  • Watson

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