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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 January 2006, 17:09 GMT
Livingston 0-1 Falkirk
Stephen O'Donnell (right) celebrates scoring Falkirk's winner
Stephen O'Donnell (right) scored Falkirk's winner
Stephen O'Donnell scored the winner to lift Falkirk eight points clear of bottom side Livingston after a deserved victory at Almondvale.

Wes Hoolahan tested Bairns goalkeeper Allan Ferguson early on, but Falkirk squandered chances before O'Donnell fired the winner from 10 yards.

A Daniel McBreen effort struck the woodwork from a mere yard as Falkirk continued to create the best chances.

Livi's chances were hampered when Paul Dalglish was sent off near the end.

Falkirk had suffered six straight defeats in the SPL, but Livi were without a victory in eight games.

And Livi player-manager Paul Lambert put himself into the starting line-up along with Allan Walker and Robert Snodgrass, with Dalglish, Paul Tierney and Gabor Vincze dropping to the bench.

Patrick Cregg, Pedro Moutinho and Jack Ross came in for Falkirk in place of Vitor Lima, Andy Lawrie and Alan Gow.

The new-look Falkirk took time to settle the impressive Hoolahan hit a 25-yard shot that visiting goalkeeper Ferguson parried wide.

Harald Pinxten sent a looping header just past the Bairns post.

But it was Falkirk who ended the first half stronger, Russell Latapy having a free-kick deflected just wide and McBreen shooting just over from the edge of the box.

Moutinho was put through on goal by McBreen but he shot straight at Roddy McKenzie.

O'Donnell finally drove home from 10 yards when a high ball towards McBreen broke kindly for the midfielder.

McKenzie blocked at the feet of Moutinho after he broke clear following a Livi corner.

Craig Ireland's header from a corner was parried by McKenzie before McBreen hit the junction of bar and post from inside the six-yard box with the ball falling into the keeper's hands.

Livi striker Steven Hislop fired in a shot that Ferguson pushed past his near post.

Lambert almost equalised when he tried to place a 20-yard free-kick into the far corner, but it drifted just wide.

Livi's hopes suffered a huge blow when Dalglish was sent off in the 81st minute after tripping Cregg and catching his head with his studs as he scrambled to reach the ball.

Latapy almost made it two after he was sent clear in the last minute, but he squandered what was the second of his two late chances.

Livingston: McKenzie, McNamee, Strong, Pinxten, Mackay, Brittain, Lambert, Walker, Hislop (Scott 74), Snodgrass (Dalglish 45), Hoolahan.
Subs Not Used: Roy, Dorado, Dair, Vincze, Tierney.

Sent Off: Dalglish (79).

Booked: Strong, McNamee, Walker, Brittain, Pinxten, Hoolahan.

Falkirk: Ferguson, Cregg, Ross (Lawrie 74), Ireland, Latapy, Milne, McBreen, Thomson (Craig 85), Rodrigues, O'Donnell, Moutinho (Lima 77).
Subs Not Used: Howard, McPherson, Theobold, Twaddle.

Booked: O'Donnell, Thomson.

Goal: O'Donnell 35.

Att: 4,577

Ref: C Murray


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