After the disappointment of last weekend’s 1-0 loss to Arbroath, Raith Rovers return to Stark’s Park this Saturday, for the first of three successive home matches.

Alloa Athletic are the opponents, a side who go into this match bottom of the table, and desperate for a win that will close the gap to the teams above them.

They were unfortunate not to take anything from last week’s 2-1 loss to Dunfermline at East End Park, where despite a good performance, they left empty handed, but they did record a good result up north in midweek, after a 2-2 draw against Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

That point left them four points behind ninth placed Ayr United, and five behind Morton who are just outside the bottom two spots.

This will be the team’s second meeting this term, with Rovers recording an excellent 5-2 win at the Indodrill on Boxing Day.

Manny Duku and Daniel Armstrong had given Rovers a two goal cushion, although that was halved with 15 minutes remaining, after a goal from Liam Buchanan.

Lars Lokotcsh appeared to make the points safe with five minutes remaining, but in an extraordinary final few minutes, Buchanan scored again in the 89th minute, this time from the penalty spot, but an injury time brace from Ethan Ross put a sheen on the scoreline.

Despite that win, Rovers have a poor record in general in this fixture, with just two wins and four draws from the last 10 meetings.

Saturday’s match referee will be Steven Kirkland

Head-To-Head Home League Record:

Raith Rovers Wins: 29 | Alloa Athletic Wins: 8 | Draws: 12

Raith Rovers Goals: 115 | Alloa Athletic Goals: 57

Current Form:

Raith Rovers: W-L-W-L-W-L

Alloa Athletic: L-L-W-D-L-D

Top Scorers:

Raith Rovers: Manny Duku 10 | Daniel Armstrong 4

Alloa Athletic: Robert Thomson 6 | Alan Trouten 6

Match Odds:

Raith Rovers: 4/7 | Alloa Athletic: 17/4 | Draw: 16/5


Rovers Take Sting Out Of Wasps

Match Sponsor

Raith Rovers moved back up to second in the Championship, after a come-from-behind victory this afternoon against Alloa Athletic. 

A frustrating first half saw the hosts trailing to Iness Cameron’s opener at the interval, but goals in the final quarter of the match from Iain Davidson, Regan Hendry and Jamie Gullan earned Rovers a deserved three points. 

Raith manager John McGlynn made three changes from last weekend’s disappointing loss to Arbroath, with Dylan Tait, Gozie Ugwu and Gullan all dropping to the bench. 

In their place, came Ross Matthews who was returning from injury, Brad Spencer, who missed out last week through illness, while top scorer Manny Duku returned to the forward line. 

Rovers have been consistently inconsistent in recent months, posting a win, followed by a loss for the last eight games, and they were immediately on the front foot in this one, with Duku galloping onto a blooter forward from Kyle Benedictus, doing well to keep the ball in play before feeding the ball to Daniel Armstrong who was in support on the right, but his cross into the area was over everyone’s heads. 

Despite that bright start, the visitors enjoyed a decent amount of possession in the game’s opening exchanges, but it was Rovers who fashioned the game’s first clear chance. 

A corner was initially cleared by the Alloa backline, before being played back into the area and into the feet of Kai Kennedy six yards out, but as you waited for the net to bulge, a fine sliding tackle from Scott Taggart stopped the chance dead. 

Alloa had their first sight at goal in the 10th minute, when Innes Cameron tried his luck from distance, with an effort that despite bouncing in front of Jamie MacDonald, was easily gathered by the ‘keeper. 

Alloa’s on-loan striker has been in good form in recent weeks, and couldn’t really be afforded time and space, but he got a run on Kevin Cawley’s cross into the penalty box in the 13th minute, rising above Davidson and heading across goal and into the net to put the bottom side in front. 

It was a rude awakening for Raith, and they were struggling to get a foothold in the game, with the ball not sticking up top, while crosses from both sides were generally wayward or straight into Nail Parry’s hands. 

Rovers were struggling to break down a resolute Alloa side who were defending and pressing well, although Kennedy had his first run at the full back after 25 minutes, which eventually resulted in a 25-yard attempt from Spencer, but his shot went both over the bar, and the safety netting behind it. 

Rovers were just starting to take control of the game however, with Armstrong and Kennedy both getting into good areas and sending deliveries into the penalty box, but Parry was still yet to be tested. 

It looked like the home side were about to equalise after 36 minutes, when a fine ball into the six-yard-area from Regan Tumilty found Duku at the back post, but from close range he got his finish all wrong and side-footed the ball into the side netting, although a linesman’s flag may have spared some of his blushes. 

Rovers had two late opportunities in the half, both coming from free-kicks, but in keeping with the frustrating nature of the first 45, Armstrong put his direct effort into the Wasps wall, while his attempted cross in the final minute was sent harmlessly out of play. 

The start of the second half didn’t see too much of a difference from the first, with Rovers seeing plenty of the ball, but not managing to eke out anything in the final third, although Alloa were starting to sit deeper and deeper as the game progressed, and inviting Raith onto them even more. 

Rovers did have the ball in the net in the 55th minute, when Armstrong’s corner was nodded into the net by Matthews, but his effort was ruled out, with the referee deciding the midfielder had fouled Parry in the move. 

The game had started to look like it was beginning to peter out, but in the 68th minute, Rovers made the scores level from a set piece. 

A free-kick was swung in on from the right, and although Parry did well initially to claw away Benedictus’s header, Davidson was on hand to volley the ball into the unguarded net to restore parity to the scoreline. 

That goal seemed to galvanize the home side, and they came close again a few minutes later, when Kennedy picked up the ball on the left hand side of the penalty area and drilled a low effort that was tipped away by Parry, but this time no-one was able to steer home the rebound. 

McGlynn’s men created another chance with 15 minutes remaining, when Kieran MacDonald’s driven cross found the head of Matthews who had launched himself at the ball, but with litte time to react he could only steer his header over the bar. 

Rovers made a change with 13 minutes remaining, with Gozie Ugwu replacing Duku, as Rovers went in search for the winner. 

Six minutes later Rovers did have the lead, after an excellently taken strike. 

Kennedy was the creator, placing the ball into the path of Hendry, who took the ball first time, and with Parry unable to react quickly enough to the early shot, his effort fizzed into the bottom corner of the net. 

With time running out, Alloa manager Peter Grant swapped his son, Ray for forward Liam Buchanan as Athletic went in search for the equaliser, but they fell further behind in the 90th minute. 

With Alloa pushing men forward, Kieran MacDonald’s clearance put Gullan, who had replaced Kennedy in the closing minutes in the clear, and while some players may have taken the ball to the corner, Gullan headed straight for goal and wrong footed Parry, who elected to dive to his left, as Gullan swept it into the opposite corner. 

The action didn’t end there though, as Alloa were awarded a penalty in the 93rd minute, but despite having a fine record from the penalty spot, Alan Trouten was denied by a brilliant stop from Jamie MacDonald, who dived to his right to tip the ball away. 

With the Pars losing to Queen of the South, the win moved Rovers back above Dunfermline in the table, with the Fife rivals facing off against each other next Friday evening, in a match that’s live on BBC Scotland. 


Photographs © Tony Fimister


The match highlights video will appear here the day after the match


RaithTV talked to John McGlynn after the win against Alloa Athletic FC

Brad chatted to RaithTV after today's win

Live Updates

Welcome to sunny Starks Park, it's 11 degrees and a perfect afternoon for football
Ross Matthews and Manny Duku make a start today.
The teams have finished the warm up and are making final preparations in the respective dressing rooms.
Rovers kick off towards the South Stand
Duku chasing a long ball, lays off to Armstrong who curls a shot wide of the back post
Duku off for treatment.
Manny back on, chasing down the ball but Parry was there to clear
Lots of action between the boxes
Rovers corner, Armstrong whips in to the near post, Davo heads wide.
Hendry hauled down on the left level with the 6 yard box
Armstrong launches the ball to the back post but is to strong for Benedictus and it runs out for a throw.
Scougall hits the ball from the edge of the D, MacDonald kneels to gather.
Parry comes out to deny the onrushing Duku.
Goal Alloa, Cawley chiped the ball to the back post and Cameron heads past MacDonald
Rovers corner, Kennedy to Matthews who along with Hendry see shots blocked
Duku runs 30 yards but is felled at the box, corner Rovers. Davidson is challenged but wins a throw.
Kennedy with a great cross to Duku but the big man is offside
Trouten this time with a cross but his target is offside.
Raith FK is launched into the area and Parry stands firm and gathers.
Latest score, Raith Rovers 0-1 Alloa (Cameron 13')
Kennedy on a blistering run is denied at the bye-line
Kennedy with a cross which is headed to Tumilty, his cross put behind by Taggart.
Tumilty getting in the mix with a pair of Alloa players, wins a FK
Kennedy and Armstrong combine, the latter hits a defender and Rovers shout for hand ball, the ref waves on play
Alloa corner, Hetherington crosses, MacDonald palms the ball into the path of a defender and cleared.
Tumilty whips the ball to the back post, Duku slides in and the ball goes behind, however the railway side linesman flags for offside.
Alloa FK 30 yards out on the right.
Taggart shoots but the ball spins off the diving MacDonald and out for a corner, MacDonald holds the ball eventually (must be wet)
Armstrong holding the back of his head as he received a glancing blow from a high boot.
Rovers FK 28 yards off centre, Armstrong hits the wall
Spencer to Armstrong who chips the ball to Duku but Parry beats him to the ball
Hetherington yellow for a foul on Armstrong
Rovers FK, wasted as Armsrtong fires the ball out of play
+1 Half time. Raith Rovers 0-1 Alloa (Cameron 13')
Allo kick off the second half.
Corner Raith.
Keeper gets a touch and out for another Raith corner.
Matthews slides in, but just fails to connect. Would have been a peach.
Lovely cross from MacDonald, headed out for a Raith corner.
Spencer has the ball in the net, but disallowed for a foul in the box.
Trouten booked for challenge on Kennedy.
Corner Raith.
Benedictus booked.
Great work from MacDonald abd Kennedy down the left.
Dick booked for time wasting as he takes his time taking a throw in.
Free kick Raith. Just outside Alloa box.
DAVIDSON reacts well to score after a great save from Parry.
Cawley book for Alloa.
Corner Raith.
Parry stretches and pushes ball out for another Raith corner.
Kennedy with a low drive. Parry can only parry, but no one there to hit home.
Getting exciting now!
MacDonald crosses abd Matthews tries a flying header. He doesn't score.
Ugwu replaces Duku.
HENDRY sent through, marked by two defenders, drills a low left foot shot past Parry. Nice!
Graham yellow carded.
MacDonald rushes out and holds well.
Tumilty has to clear under pressure abd out for an Alloa corner.
Grant replaced by Buchanan.
Spencer well over bar from just outside the box.
Davidson is MoM.
Musonda replaces Tumilty.
Gullan replaces Kennedy.
Unsurprisingly, a fair bit of Alloa pressure just now.
GULLAN races down the left from the half way line. He couldn't be caught and drills hone before the defence can catch him.
Penalty Alloa!
SAVED! Trouten goes to MacDonald's right and so does the keeper.
Full time: Raith Rovers 3-1 Alloa.
Solid second half showing from the Rovers. Tough loss for Alloa.
Raith Rovers 3-1 Alloa (Davidson 67' Hendry 82' Gullan 90+1) (Cameron 13')