Dumbarton 0
Falkirk 1
League (Championship)

0 - 1

League (Championship)
Saturday, May 6th, 2017
Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium. Att. 1,660
3:00 PM Kick-off

None. Nathan Austin (85)

Team Managers
Stevie Aitken
Peter Houston

Starting Eleven
Alan Martin
Daniel Harvie
Darren Barr
Gregor Buchanan
Stuart Carswell
Sam Stanton
Garry Fleming
Andy Stirling
David Smith
Robert Thomson
Lewis Vaughan
Robbie Thomson
Aaron Muirhead
Luca Gasparatto
Peter Grant
Luke Leahy
Joe McKee
Mark Kerr
Craig Sibbald
James Craigen
Nathan Austin
Lee Miller

Jamie Ewings
Mark Docherty
Tom Lang
Calum Gallagher
Kyle Prior
Christian Nade
Joe Nuttall
Danny Rogers
Lewis Kidd
John Baird
Bob McHugh
Scott Shepherd
Tony Gallacher
Fraser Aird

Christian Nade for Garry Fleming (72)
Calum Gallagher for Lewis Vaughan (79)
Mark Docherty for Stuart Carswell (83)
Fraser Aird for James Craigen (78)
Bob McHugh for Nathan Austin (88)

Darren Barr (34)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Don Robertson (Referee)

Photography by Donald Fullarton

Match Report

TRUTH be told, it was all a sideshow.

As far as Dumbarton were concerned, only an avalanche of goals in Raith Rovers' favour at Kirkcaldy, and a result for St Mirren at Hibs, could put any pressure on them.

And while any defeat, like this one to Falkirk, carries a degree of disappointment, the bigger picture remained largely untainted.

It was a losing Saturday, but it was Survival Saturday.

Nathan Austin's goal five minutes from full time confirmed second place for the Bairns. Even though Raith scored in injury time against Ayr United to finish level on points with Sons, the job was never going to be undone.

Season 2017/18 was going to be Dumbarton's sixth in the Championship barring last day results which would send shock waves through football. Those didn't happen.

A successful campaign didn't deserve to end in defeat, but as the final whistle neared in what was far from a vintage game, Austin made the difference with a close range header.

The next Sons side to line up in competitive action in July will look very different to this one. But as the current squad took its final bow together, they could be satisfied.

A goal in the first half looked more likely to come from the home side, although chances did not come frequently for either side.

After 25 minutes Robert Thomson almost marked his final match for Sons by scoring past a keeper who shares his full name. However, his close range effort was deflected on to the bar and over.

Alan Martin saved Craig Sibbald's header before Andy Stirling's shot lacked pace, but troubled the visiting keeper enough for him to turn it wide.

Right on half time Lewis Vaughan could have got a goal which would have put his parent club, Raith, in further danger, but shot over.

The second half followed much the same pattern, but with more threat from the visitors. Peter Grant's header forced Martin into a save, while Vaughan and Sam Stanton were also close for Dumbarton.

With 17 minutes left Lee Miller, who scored a late winner in the sides' first meeting this season in August, thought he had headed home, but Stuart Carswell cleared his effort off the line.

Instead, the honour of scoring the decider fell to Austin, who reached Luke Leahy's cross from the left and finished.

In terms of a result, it wasn't the way Dumbarton wanted to end. In terms of league finish, it was.

The post-match applause was accepted in the knowledge that at least five of the team have played their last game for Sons, either through pre-contract agreements or the expiry of loans. More may follow, depending on business over the coming weeks.

It will be another different team next season. But that's football.

Bring on season number six.

Match report written by Andy Galloway

Squad Statistics (as at May 6th, 2017)

2016-17 All Time
Alan Martin (GK)28 39 - 39 -
Darren Barr32 35 - 713
Daniel Harvie18 343343
Gregor Buchanan27 402773
Garry Fleming29 36617933
Sam Stanton23 274274
Stuart Carswell23 16 - 16 -
David Smith24 431431
Andy Stirling 27 413413
Robert Thomson 23 43124312
Lewis Vaughan21 154154
Mark Docherty (sub)28 364756
Calum Gallagher (sub)22 7 - 7 -
Christian Nade (sub)32 1542911

League Table (as at May 6th, 2017)

No league table has been added for this season.