Albion endured a frustrating night at Glebe Park in Stuart McLaren’s first League 1 game in charge as 10-man Brechin claimed the points to move up to fifth place.
Albion endured a frustrating night at Glebe Park on Tuesday in Stuart McLaren’s first League 1 game in charge as 10-man Brechin claimed the points to move up to fifth place.
We were made to pay for missing some good first-half chances when Robert Thomson fired City ahead after 27 minutes.
Ray McKinnon’s side had defender Colin Hamilton sent off for handball seven minutes after the interval but Gordon Smith – who scored twice in Saturday’s marathon shoot-out with Hurlford – saw his kick saved by Graeme Smith.
Within three minutes, substitute Paul McLean doubled Brechin’s lead with a fine header and they held on despite Graham Weir pulling one back late on with an accurate downward header for his first goal of the season.
Albion showed two changes to the team that started against Hurlford, with Weir and Dale Fulton replacing Darren Smith and Phil Johnston in midfield.
Lewis Coult, Craig Comrie and Darren Lee Smith were ruled out through injury and keeper Greg Paterson was unavailable due to work commitments so there was a place on the bench for Sean Robertson in a game that was postponed from Saturday due to our cup replay.
Brechin triumphed 5-0 at Forthbank in September but we had won on our two most recent visits to Glebe Park in 2011/12 and started well here.
Gordon Smith and Sandy Cunningham both had great chances to give us the lead but City keeper Smith made two vital saves and we were punished when Thomson gathered a deep cross from the left and cracked a low drive across Callum Reidford and into the far corner.
We should have equalised early in the second half when Hamilton saw red for handling after Graeme Smith had done well to deny Steven Doris from close range but Gordon’s Smith spot-kick was saved.
McLean headed the hosts further in front following a cross from the right and Brechin defended well until Weir gave us hope, but we couldn’t find an equaliser.
Brechin City: Smith, McNeil, Hamilton, D McCormack, McLauchlan, Fusco, Barr, Cameron (Molloy 62), A Jackson (Trouten 89), Masson, Thomson (McLean 55).
Subs (not used): J McCormack, Riordan, Tough, O’Neil (GK)
Scorers: Thomson 27, McLean 56
Stirling Albion: Reidford, Hamilton, Forsyth (Creaney 67), Robertson, McGeachie, C Smith, Weir, Fulton (Johnston 62), Doris, G Smith, Cunningham (D Smith 77).
Subs (not used): McClune, Wedderburn, Munn, Robertson (GK).
Scorer: Weir 85
Referee: Mat Northcroft