Arbroath make the relatively short trip to Methil tomorrow as East Fife hope to bounce back from last Saturday's disappointing defeat to Alloa Athletic at the Indodrill Stadium. The task of returning to winning ways will certainly not be an easy one as the Angus men have recorded some fine victories this season, including a terrific 7-1 success against Airdrieonians last week.
Bayview boss Darren Young was left frustrated at the loss of avoidable goals at Alloa, particularly after getting off to a good start, taking an early lead after a fine strike from midfielder Kyle Wilkie. He will however be heartened by the availability of influencial defender Jonathan Page, after serving a two match suspension. Injuries to Craig Watson and Chris Kane necessitated a last gasp search for another central defender, with 18 year old Jordan Piggot's signature on loan from Dundee being secured just hours before kick-off last Saturday. The young West Midlander was one of the positives for the Fifers from the outing, turning in an impressive performance on his senior debut.
East Fife's recent record against the men from Gayfield is encouraging, having won their last four meetings between the sides, including a 3-2 victory in an incident packed encounter in the Angus town earlier in the season, but the Methil men will be only too aware that they will need to be at the top of their game tomorrow to earn the points.
Supporters of both clubs are reminded that they are welcome to enjoy refreshments at the stadium bars before and after the game.
Signed from Kennoway Hearts during the summer of 1944 at the tender age of seventeen, local lad Allan Brown played his first match for East Fife in an Eastern (Wartime) League fixture against Dundee United at Tannadice on 12th August. Described in the press as “a big chap who can shoot with either foot”, Allan quickly established himself in the East Fife team at the position of inside-left, and scored his first goal for the club in a 1-1 draw with Dundee at Dens Park on 25th November. However, with Allan having reached the age of eighteen in October 1944, and with the Second World War still to reach a conclusion, it was inevitable that the young player would be called up to serve his country, although Allan did manage to maintain a regular place in the side until March 1945.
Despite the unconditional surrender of all German forces to the Allies on 7th May 1945 and the surrender of the Japanese some four months later, the end of the war did not necessarily mean the end of active service for conscripts, and Allan found himself scheduled to serve in India, where the British Army maintained a presence until 1948. Despite his imminent departure, however, Allan did manage to squeeze in one final appearance whilst on embarkation leave against St Johnstone in a ‘B’ Division (Southern League) fixture on 1st September 1945, and helped the Fife to a 2-1 victory.
Allan’s appearances over the next three seasons were restricted to home leave, during which he clocked up only a handful of games, and it was to be season 1948/49 before he managed to re-establish himself in the East Fife team after having finally been demobbed.
Once fully back in the fold, Allan made twenty-nine first team appearances for the Methil men during season 1948/49, scoring five goals, and helped the Fife reach the semi-final of the Scottish Cup and the quarter-final of the League Cup. It was to be the following season before the Kennoway lad really made his presence felt, however, when he never missed a single first team game and found the net eighteen times into the bargain as East Fife lifted the League Cup for a second time and reached the final of the Scottish Cup.
It came as no surprise, therefore, when Allan Brown was selected for the Scottish League side to face the English League on Wednesday 22nd March 1950 at Ayresome Park in Middlesbrough, where the Scots suffered a 3-1 defeat in front of a crowd of 39,352. Despite a poor team performance, Allan was reported to have teamed up well with Hearts’ Scotland internationalist Willie Bauld, which must have pleased the international selectors, as just over a month later Allan was selected to up front play alongside Bauld for the friendly against Switzerland in Glasgow on Wednesday 26th April 1950. With Methil team-mate George Aitken also in the side, Allan became the fifth East Fife player to be capped at full international level for Scotland whilst still plying his trade at Bayview, and did himself proud by scoring Scotland’s third goal in a 3-1 victory in front of an incredible Hampden crowd of 123,751.
Allan was then selected to travel with the Scotland party on a two-match continental tour to Portugal and France and, on Sunday 21st May, he was East Fife’s sole representative in the Scotland side to face the Portuguese in the Estadio Nacional in Lisbon, where the Fifer netted the second goal in a 2-2 draw in front of 68,000 spectators.
The player was by now attracting the attention of top clubs from all over the world, in particular from South America, and Allan made no secret of his willingness to play in the southern hemisphere; his only provisos being that the climate was to the liking of his Indian-born wife and that any signing-on fee was lodged in his Scottish bank account before he departed for the club in question! With the eyes of the world upon him, the East Fife man saved his best for the second tour match, in front of 35,568 at Stade Olympique du Colombes in Paris on Saturday 27th May, when he scored the only goal of the game mid-way through the second half to record a 1-0 victory for the Scots; a feat that was not to be repeated against France on their own soil for another 57 years, when James McFadden pulled off a similar party-piece to record a famous single-goal victory in September 2007!
After returning home, it was clear to all that Allan Brown reckoned his future lay away from Bayview, which was hardly surprising with such a wealth of clubs keen to land the signature of the Scotland star. Understandably, East Fife were equally keen to retain the player, and a bitter dispute between the two parties ensued, with Brown refusing to agree new terms with the club. The result was that one of the most sought-after names in the game didn’t kick a ball for nearly six months and, with no wages coming in, was forced to seek temporary employment carrying out odd jobs here and there to make ends meet! Just as the dispute was threatening to reach the Court of Session, Allan Brown was eventually sold to Blackpool in December 1950 for a fee of £26,500; a record for a Scottish Club to have received at the time!
At Blackpool, Allan teamed up with the legendary Stanley Matthews to form one of the most formidable attacking forces in English football, but unfortunately missed out on Blackpool’s 1951 F.A. Cup final appearance due to a knee injury. Two years later, the player was dealt an even crueller blow when he missed out on playing in the famous “Matthews Final” at Wembley in May 1953, when Blackpool beat Bolton 4-3, after breaking his leg scoring the winning goal in the semi-final against Arsenal.
During his days at Bloomfield Road Allan Brown picked up another eleven Scotland caps, including appearances against Austria and Uruguay in the 1954 World Cup finals in Switzerland. After leaving Blackpool, Allan turned out for Luton Town and Portsmouth before ending his playing days as player/manager at Wigan Athletic. Allan then moved on to manage Luton Town, Torquay United, Bury, Nottingham Forest and Southport before two spells in charge of Blackpool either side of a spell in Kuwait managing Quadsia. Allan Brown retired from football in May 1982, and passed away at the age of eighty-four on 20th April 2011.
The 1903 Travel Club will be running a free bus to Kirkcaldy for our match v Raith Rovers on the 4th of November at Stark’s Park. The bus will leave Bayview at 1:45 pm and pick up on route at the usual places. Seats on the bus MUST be booked in advance by contacting Ian Lowson on 07795115631 (text only please).
In addition, the lounge at Bayview will be open from 12 pm on the 4th of November with the club providing light snacks.
If interested, contact Ian asap to book your seat
We are pleased to confirm the signing of Jordan Piggott who joins us on a short-term emergency loan from Dundee where he has been a regular for their development side this season. The signing was confirmed just prior to kick off on Saturday meaning an announcement was not possible before the game. 18-year-old Jordan began his career at West Bromwich Albion before joining Dundee in the summer.
Jordan made his debut in Saturday’s game v Alloa Athletic where, despite the loss, he earned praise from manager Darren Young “Young Jordan came in and was probably man-of-the-match for us, he was outstanding. 18-years-old, we signed him at 12 o’clock today from Dundee and he was brilliant. Composed, always looking for the ball and he’s probably got a big future in the game”.
Welcome to Bayview Jordan!
Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 21st October
Alloa Athletic 4 (Crossan 25’, Hetherington 45’, Graham 60’, Flannigan 74’)
East Fife 1 (Wilkie 8’)
Alloa Athletic XI: Parry, Robertson, Taggart, Graham, Crane, Cawley (Cook 81’), Flemming, Hetherington, Flannigan, Malcolm (Renton 68’), Crossan (Martin 81’)
Subs: Wilson, Goodwin
East Fife XI: M Hurst, Dunsmore, Piggott, Docherty, Slattery, Flanagan (Wilson 66’), Willis, Millar, G Hurst (Smith 66’), Wilkie, Duggan (Reilly 83’)
Subs: Goodfellow, Lamont, Mutch
Referee: Mike Roncone
East Fife travelled to the Indodrill Stadium to face Alloa Athletic but it was the hosts who claimed all three points following a 4-1 win. Manager Darren Young made three injury-enforced changes to the side that produced the stunning comeback against Albion Rovers last time out with Chris Kane, Craig Watson and Scott Linton missing out and being replaced by Kyle Wilkie, Paul Willis and new loan-signing 18-year-old Jordan Piggott, signed from Dundee prior to kick off.
East Fife were in front inside 8 minutes when Wilkie turned his man and unleashed an unstoppable strike past Alloa ‘keeper Neil Parry – his first goal since February 2016. Aside from the goal, the opening 20 minutes were devoid of any real chances; Willis tried his luck from 25-yards at one end but couldn’t find the target before Kevin Cawley had a shot blocked by Piggott at the other the only chances of note during the early exchanges.
Alloa were level on 24 minutes when Mark Hurst spilled Jon Robertson’s cross from the right leaving Paul Joseph Crossan an easy tap in. The goal failed to dent East Fife’s confidence and it was the visitors who continued to create opening in front of goal. Chris Duggan had a shot blocked from close range before last-weekend’s goal-hero Greg Hurst’s shot from 15-yards was narrowly wide of the right-hand post with Parry beaten. The visitors were hit with a sucker-punch on the stroke of half-time however when Steven Hetherington’s free kick from the right-hand touchline evaded everyone and crept into the bottom left-hand corner.
East Fife started the second half on the front foot with Nathan Flanagan spurning two opportunities in front of goal albeit neither of the clear-cut chances before the visitors were hit with a second sucker-punch on the hour mark when Andy Graham fired past Hurst from close range. East Fife protested believing Graham to be in an offside position but referee Mike Roncone wasn’t interested – replays have so far been inconclusive.
Iain Flannigan wrapped up the points for the home side 15 minutes from time with a free kick which found the top left-hand corner. The game largely petered out after that with the home side content to keep position without causing any further threat. East Fife had one final opportunity 5 minutes from time but Piggott header from substitute Kevin Smith’s cross was straight at Parry.
A game that is difficult to sum up. East Fife played well in spells but defensive errors again proving costly.