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Dunfermline Athletic

Dunfermline Athletic 5Cowdenbeath FC 0

Date: 29th December 2010 Kick off: 7:30pm
Competition: Irn-Bru 1st Division Referee: Bobby Madden
Venue: East End Park Attendance: 2942
Man of the Match: David Hay

An eventful year ended on a low note as four second half goals gave the Pars a convincing win as they consolidated their place at the top of the table.

The 254 Cowden fans in attendance were greeted with the news that Jimmy Nicholl had made three changes to the side which had went down at Dens Park.

Joe Mbu was sidelined once more by injury while Marc McKenzie and Lee Sibanda dropped down to the bench.

Brian Fairbairn and John Ferguson came back into the side while youngster Paul Byrne was handed his debut.

Cowden opened the game well and after eight minutes Byrne set up Ferguson who raced into the home box but was stopped by a well timed tackle from Keddie.

A few minutes later Graham made a good run for the home side and shot forced Linton to knock the ball over his own bar.

At the other end our bright start continued and after 14 minutes a Woods clearance came off Byrne and keeper Smith had to race off his line to defy Ferguson.

Five minutes later Cameron’s excellent pass found Dempster in space in the home box but before the striker could get in a telling shot Dowie slid in to clear.

Gradually, the home side started to push us back and Kirk, sent in a low 20-yarder which Hay held.

Then, in 28 minutes, came the breakthrough for the home side. Graham made an incisive run for the Pars and Hay deflected his shot for a corner. After Willis’s initial cross had been cleared, the youngster sent the ball back into the box and Hay’s parry hit appeared to come off Andy Kirk’s arm as he knocked the ball into the empty net.

Ten minutes later a slip by Armstrong let Kirk run clean through but Hay made an exellent save.

Cowden battled on though and minutes from the break Byrne’s cross was met by Ferguson but his header was well wide of goal.

Two minutes after the re-start Cowden won a free-kick 35 yards out but Fairbairn’s long range effort was well held by Smith.

Then the Pars embarked on a spell of pressure which saw McDougall bring out a fine save from Hay and then Baxter cleared a Keddie header off the line following a Willis corner.

However, there was a worry for the Pars when substitute McKenzie sent over a cross from the right which deceived Smith and came back off the bar.

Former Cowden man Clarke replaced Kirk for Pars in 59 minutes and within five minutes he had scored.

Willis and Woods worked a move which saw a lovely pass threaded through to Pat Clarke, who outpaced Armstrong and Winter before firing low past Hay.

Four minutes later we went further behind. Willis was again the danger man with a good run and low cross which midfielder Nick Phinn turned into the net from six yards out.

In 74 minutes another fine Hay save defied McDougall but four minutes from time a Cameron mistake was pounced on by Pars sub Thomson and his pass freed Pat Clarke, who fired a fierce shot wide of Hay.

Then with just seconds remaining came a fifth. Cardle’s shot was parried by Hay but the ball rebounded off the unfortunate Scott Linton and rolled into the net.

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