Nov 12 2008 Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser
IT has been a while since a Rovers team started an away game as favourites, so there was a little apprehension among the travelling support at Berwick on Saturday, writes Sam Tennent.
False dawns are a familiar phenomenon to the Cliftonhill faithful but on this occasion we neednt have worried as Paul Martins men served up a feast of football and utterly outplayed the hapless Borderers.
Three goals were scored for the second week running and there could have, and perhaps should have, been more.
For a 25-minute spell at the beginning of the second half, Rovers were unstoppable and looked like scoring every time they went forward.
Bobby Barr was once again immense and the hosts indulged in some crude tactics to try to put him off his game. He answered in the best way possible with a superb 20-yard drive putting the Vers two up and effectively ending the game as a contest.
If Bobby was the main attraction, then Ross Harris was a very able support act with a wonderful display of midfield mastery.
Ross has also chipped in with four goals over the last three weeks and if his first goal on Saturday was a relatively mundane affair a simple finish after some great set up play from Barr the other three have been simply sensational.
Seldom can there have been such a spectacular trio of strikes from a Rovers player! Can he make it four this Saturday?
Rovers may have been favourites against a struggling Berwick side but there were no such expectations when high-flying Cowdenbeath were the visitors to Cliftonhill last week.
This was an excellent game during which both sides created chances to win and it was not until that man Ross unleashed a 30-yard screamer in the final moments that the points were secured for the Coatbridge side.
Overall, this was possibly the best performance by a Rovers team in the last four seasons.
Both defensively and offensively they dominated the game against very good opposition and must now feel confident that they can do likewise against any team in the third division.
Pauls side are now on a four-game unbeaten run, have established the winning habit in the last three and now stand fifth in the league table.
They have a great chance of extending this run against Annan Athletic at Cliftonhill this weekend having already defeated the leagues new boys at Galabank earlier in the season.
The team is now taking on a very settled look and the gaffer has been able to name an unchanged side in the last two games.
One cloud on the horizon is the possibility of losing some players who are on loan just now Chris McCluskey in goal has particularly impressed me however with players such as Barr, Harris and Marc Pollock on the books, the future looks bright whatever transpires on that front.
All in all, its a great time to be a Rovers fan and the entertainment being served up by the team is really first class.
Do yourself a favour and get the family along to Cliftonhill on Saturday and see some great football!