Football: Falkirk relegated from Scottish Premier League
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Falkirk were today relegated from the Scottish Premier League (SPL), after they failed to beat Kilmarnock away from home. It was their final game of the season. The teams fought out a 0–0 draw at Rugby Park, a game which did not see many shots on goal with only nine in the whole game. It is the first time Falkirk have been in the second tier of Scottish football since 2005.
Kilmarnock had previously been two points clear of twelfth position, occupied instead by Falkirk. The team in last place would be relegated, and, only needing a draw, Kilmarnock played a slow and defensive game. It is the first time Falkirk have been in the second tier of Scottish football since 2005. With only two shots on target the entire game, much of the credit for the draw went to each team's defensive line, putting in several last-ditch tackles to stifle attacks.
While Falkirk had the upper hand in the first half possession-wise, the contest was more even in the second. On 77 minutes, the Falkirk side had the ball in the net, but the goal was disallowed for a clear foul on the Kilmarnock goalkeeper. Shortly after, Kilmarnock clipped the crossbar with a Craig Bryson effort. Falkirk had a glorious opportunity to win the game on 86 minutes, when the ball landed for Ryan Flynn with the goal empty, but the young midfielder put it over from ten yards.
Kilmarnock manager Jimmy Calderwood, speaking after the game, spoke of his experiences: "It was a long, long day. I wouldn't advise it for anybody to be honest, you know. It's the first time and hopefully the last time.
"They didn't really cause us any problems. We had a chance on the counter attack, we didn't take it, and then I think it was the 92nd or 93rd minute young Flynn missed a dottie of a chance. It could have been over and out. All credit to Falkirk."
When asked about his future at the club, Calderwood replied: "I'll see what the idea is. I wouldn't want to stay with too many games like this."
The manager of Falkirk, Steven Pressley, also told Radio Scotland his views on the game: "It was a very emotional day, you know, we're bitterly disappointed, but once again I couldn't ask any more from this group of players. The things we talk about, the desire, the effort, the application, they were in abundance today. They gave me their absolute lot. It just wasn't to be."
This was Pressley's first season as a manager, and he was questioned on his experience in the role: "I love it. It's been an emotional day today, but in terms of my three months in charge, it's been a terrific experience. I very much enjoy it here and hopefully we can certainly build for next season."
Falkirk will be replaced in the Scottish Premier League next season by Inverness Caledonian Thistle, who bounced straight back into the top flight after their relegation in 2009.
- Clive Lindsay. "Kilmarnock 0–0 Falkirk" — , May 8, 2010
- Press Association. "Falkirk relegated following Kilmarnock stalemate" — , May 8, 2010
- Mike Barton. "Battling Bairns sent down" — , May 8, 2010