Albion Rovers 3 Forfar Athletic 2 (League One) 23rd April 2016

Forfar Athletic fell at the final hurdle in their attempts to avoid relegation following a 3-2 defeat at Albion Rovers on Saturday.

Wins for Brechin City and Stenhousemuir meant the Loons are unable to catch either of them or Cowdenbeath therefore are relegated to League Two.

Despite taking the lead after fifty seconds through Danny Denholm and Andy Ryan’s penalty midway through the second half; goals from Ally Love, Scott McBride and Mick Dunlop sealed all three points for play-off chasing Rovers.

The Loons looked up for the fight straight away and took the lead after just fifty seconds when Ryan held the ball up well before threading a through ball for Denholm to race on to before coolly slotting home.

Less than two minutes later Forfar could have added a second; Gavin Swankie’s free kick creating problems in the Rovers box and the defence had to look sharp to block Ryan and Gareth Rodger’s efforts.

Ryan then had a shot saved by Ross Stewart with all the above action taking place in the first three minutes.

Albion equalised in the 7th minute when a long ball into the box wasn’t dealt with by Darren Hill or Michael Dunlop and Ally Love nipped in to place the ball in the empty net.

Ten minutes later and the hosts took the lead; Love troubling the defence again down the left and his cross was nodded home by Scott McBride at the back post.

They could have extended the lead on the half hour mark when Love saw his shot palmed into the path of McBride but his header was held this time.

Love looked to be in on goal again eight minutes into the second half after a slip by Rodger but Dunlop made a fantastic effort to get back and tackle the scorer.

Ryan had a header held from a Spark cross before the Loons were awarded a penalty when Denholm was hauled down by Kyle Turnbull who was booked for his troubles. Ryan stepped up and blasted the penalty past Stewart to give the Loons a lifeline with Brechin drawing and Stenhousemuir losing at this point.

Forfar seemed to be more up for it following this goal with Spark’s cross in the 67th minute finding Scott Martin but his header was brilliantly saved by the keeper.

Just a minute later Michael Kennedy saw his shot deflected twice before being cleared off the line by Ross Dunlop.

Love had an effort cleared off the line before Rovers took the lead again; Mick Dunlop nodding home a McBride corner.

Following this goal news filtered through that both Brechin and Stenny were now leading, this meant Forfar had to win or face automatic relegation.

Despite this, the Loons failed to threaten much in the final minutes; Ryan’s weak effort straight at the keeper the only shot of note Forfar had.

The final whistle went and some of the Loons players looked devastated as they walked off the pitch with the side now playing League Two football in 2016/17 where they will see some familiar faces.

Stewart, Reid, Turnbull, Fisher, R. Dunlop, Mick Dunlop, Ferry (Georgiev 69), Davidson, McBride, Willis (Archibald 69), Love (Barrowman 88)

Subs not used: Petrie, Talu, Kerjean, Lochhead (gk)

Hill, Spark, Kennedy (Fotheringham 88), Dunlop (Campbell 80), Rodger, Smith, Martin, Craig, Ryan, Swankie, Denholm

Subs not used: Kader, Young, Hodge, Aitken, King (gk)

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