Ayr United new league leaders after Airdrie win

Ayr Utd manager Ian McCall. Picture: SNS
Ayr Utd manager Ian McCall. Picture: SNS
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Ayr United became the third different leaders of League 1 in three weeks as they came from behind to defeat Airdrie 2-1 at the Excelsior Stadium. Fans of the Honest Men will be hoping that the gritty nature of this win shows that there is substance in their squad as, coincidentlly, they were in top spot exactly 12 months ago before going on a wretched run that saw them pick up just one win in 16 games.

The Diamonds took the lead after just five minutes when Liam Watt exchanged passes with Taylor Morgan before curling a shot high into the net. Ayr goalkeeper Greg Fleming and defender Gerry McLauchlan combined to prevent David Cox from doubling Airdrie’s lead before Craig Moore fired in an equaliser right on half time.

Brian Gilmour’s long-distance drive midway through the second half turned out to be the winner, with the game marred by a neck injury suffered by Morgan that saw him stretchered off and taken to hospital.

Ayr boss Ian McCall said: “The game turned our way when Craig equalised. Airdrie had been better than us up until then. This is a big win.”

The result ended a run of four consecutive wins for Airdrie and manager Gary Bollan said: “Overall, I am disappointed not to take anything as we played well.”

Forfar were knocked off top spot when they went down 2-1 at Cowdenbeath thanks to Greig Spence’s header 19 minutes from time. The Blue Brazil led at the break after Gordon Smith had converted an Andy Murdoch cut-back. The Loons levelled four minutes after the restart when Gavin Swankie shot home, but Spence clinched it for the Fifers.

Dunfermline returned to winning ways with a 5-0 success at Stenhousemuir that moved them between Ayr and Forfar in the table. Joe Cardle swept the Pars in front after 11 minutes, with Faissal El Bakhtaoui heading home eight minutes later.

Shaun Byrne added a third before half time, with El Bakhtaoui adding a fourth in the second half and Mickael Antoine-Curier grabbing his first goal for the club to complete the scoring.

Brechin player/manager Darren Dods finally enjoyed a win as his Glebe Park squad defeated Peterhead 3-2 at Balmoor.

Albion Rovers had their first away success following promotion when they saw off Stranraer 1-0 thanks to substitute Scott McBride’s second-half goal.