So here we are, the final ‘home’ game is upon us as the season starts to come to an end.
Fans will fully remember the last time we played today’s opponents as it can be argued that was the day that the fans could relax and proudly say that Queen’s Park was on the verge of their first championship in 21 years.
The euphoria that hit when Simon Murray connected onto Baynham’s cross will be remembered by every Queen’s fan for years to come that is for sure.
Simon took a different role for this visit of Edinburgh to the Falkirk Stadium as he joined Queen’s Park’s own Chuckle brothers – Keith and Craig – in the commentary box.
Like the Chuckle Brothers famous phrase ‘To me, To You‘ the games against Edinburgh City this season has been a real back and forth with a 3-3 at Hampden Park and then the now famous 3-2 victory at Ainslie Park just a few weeks ago.
Whilst we would not be able to predict if this game would follow the same pattern (Spoiler: It didn’t really), what we could guarantee is that David Galt would be lifting the League 2 Trophy at the end of the game.
It was another chance to freshen things up as we made four changes from Tuesday night with Gilles, Robson, McHugh and Baynham coming in for Paterson, Gillespie, Maclean and Kouider-Aissa.
In terms of Edinburgh, they had former Spider Liam Brown in their line-up.
Pre-match, there was a guard of honour from Edinburgh City as they welcomed the champions on to the pitch. A nice touch from Edinburgh.
With Gilles making his first start, it meant we had two right-backs in the starting 11 alongside Doyle so MacKinnon went for a 3-5-2 with Gillies and Robson playing the role of wingbacks.
The game started with a bit of back and forth but not one team took the game by the horns.
That all changed in the eighth minute when it was Louis Longridge who opened the scoring for the spiders. He picked up in the middle of the park, ran with the ball and took a shot from around 25 yards out. It was an absolute screamer. Antell in goals probably could have done better with that shot but that will not take away from this late goal of the season contender.
Edinburgh had their first chance of the game as Balatoni headed over the bar from a Craig Thomson corner. Soon after that Muir was tested for the first time after a jinky run and shot but it was comfortable for the keeper.
Morrison had the unfortunate award of being first in the book after a mistimed challenge on Danny Jardine.
Edinburgh is always dangerous from set-pieces and tonight was not any different as a Craig Thomson’s corner results in a game of ping pong in the middle that was thankfully cleared off the line. Another chance for Edinburgh soon came with Liam Brown getting into space after a cushioned header from Ouzy but Brown’s shot was well wide.
It was now Queen’s turn to get some chances in before the half time break. First was some great footwork by Longridge and a cross that was perfect for McHugh to head, sadly it was just over the bar and then the offside flag came up to put some salt into the wounds. The next chance came after a sloppy back pass from Balatoni meant Longridge found himself clear on goal but Antell was up to the task in keeping Louis Longridge’s tally to just one in the first half.
Edinburgh started the second half strong with a few half changes including a Thomson free kick that was easily saved by Muir. Liam Brown was also becoming more of a threat with his zippy runs.
Connell’s delivers from set-pieces have been great since he joined on loan from Celtic and tonight was no exception as an early corner in the second half met Stuart Morrison’s head, but it was just over the bar.
Not content with one goal of the season candidate, Queen’s Park wanted another and we had that on the 59th minute. After a mistake by the Edinburgh defender, Connell runs with the ball and shots from just outside the box. The ball landed in the bottom right-hand corner and Antell could only stand there like a statue as the ball flew past him!
After the second goal, it was time to mix things up and the gaffer did this by making a triple change. Maclean, Galt, and Gillespie came on for Baynham, Connell, and Gilles. With this break in play, came a change in formation as well as we changed from a 3-5-2 to a 4-2-3-1 with Galt, Longridge and Maclean playing behind McHugh.
Good play by Galt brought in Robson for a shot inside the box but the shot was sadly wide.
Edinburgh had another chance after Handling passes to Campbell who fires it across the box but thankfully Ouzy could not connect with the ball.
Gillespie was next in the book with a cynical foul in the middle of the park.
With 15 minutes to go, we saw more changes with Lyon and Kouider-Aissa joining the party and Carroll and Longridge departing.
With the game nearing its end we had a few more chances for Queen’s Park. There was a long-range shot from Darren Lyon, but it blazed over the bar and we were also treated to another game of ping pong from a Queen’s corner, but no one could add to the 2-0 lead.
The final whistle was blown and that was that for home games this season at least. The game resulted in two fantastic Queen’s Park goals and another clean sheet for Muir this season. The games against Edinburgh this season have certainly delivered, and we could see the fixture again next season as this Edinburgh side will still be dangerous in the upcoming playoffs.
After the game we had the pleasure of seeing long-time Spider David Galt lift the league trophy in front of a somewhat empty stadium. What a crazy season it has been.
Queen’s Park: Muir, Doyle, Kilday, Morrison, Robson, Gillies (MacLean 65′), Carroll (Lyon 76′), Connell (Gillespie 65′), Longridge (Kouider-Aïssa 76′), McHugh, Baynham (Galt 67′). Subs not used: Paterson, Collumbine, Biggar.
Edinburgh City: Antell, Thomson, Balatoni, McIntyre, Crane, Laird, Jardine, Brown, De Vita (Handling 66′), See (Dishington 87′), Campbell. Subs not used: Black, Smith, Jarron, Newman, Goodfellow, Denham.
Referee: Lloyd Wilson.