Berwick 0 Cowdenbeath 3: Harvey's league journey starts with loss

Chris Hamilton was one of three players dismissed during the match
Chris Hamilton was one of three players dismissed during the match

It wasn’t the way new Berwick manager Johnny Harvey wanted to start his league career - a 3-0 home defeat at the hands of Cowdenbeath on Saturday, and three players sent off into the bargain.

Rangers had John Neill red carded in the first half, with skipper Robert Wilson and Chris Hamilton both following him for an early bath in the second.

Harvey Swann scored two first half goals, including a penalty, whilst Fraser Mullen also netted in the second half after the third Berwick dismissal.

The victory lifts Cowden onto 11 points, whilst Rangers remain second from bottom on six.

With only two minutes on the clock, Greg Hurst forced Cowden keeper Gary Maley into making a save, the only effort on target for the home side in 90 minutes.

But Rangers were dealt a blow after 16 minutes when they were reduced to ten men, when Neill, who had been playing in central defence, was shown a straight red card by referee Alan Newlands.

Neill had kicked out at David Cox, who was shown a yellow for retaliation – one of five ‘Blue Brazil’ players to find their way into the book during thwe match.

Cowden used their extra man to good effect when they took the lead on 28 minutes, Swann firing home from 15 yards out through a crowded goalmouth.

Two minutes later Swann also fired wide after Berwick failed to clear their lines.

On 37 minutes Swann doubled his and Cowden’s tally when he converted from the penalty spot after captain Wilson tripped Martin Scott.

The second half provided little by way of goalmouth action.

Berwick battled with ten men but never threatened the Cowden back line.

Rangers’ task was made all the more difficult when Wilson was sent off for an over the top challenge right in front of the referee, with Hamilton following him to the dressingroom just two minutes later for a foul, having been booked for dissent following the Wilson dismissal.

From the resulting free kick, on 80 minutes, Fraser Mullen slammed a loose ball into the bottom corner past a helpless Sean Brennan for 3-0.