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Ayr United go down, Stirling Albion secure title

By Clive Lindsay

Stirling captain Ross Forsyth and boss Allan Moore celebrate
Stirling captain Ross Forsyth and boss Allan Moore were celebrating

Stirling Albion will replace Ayr United in Division One next season after a final day of drama in the Scottish Football League.

Ayr were relegated as Morton secured a 2-1 win that ensured their own safety, while Airdrie United face a play-off.

Stirling won the Division Two title to edge out Alloa on goal difference with a draw that secures Brechin a play-off.

Arbroath face a place-off to avoid relegation, while Queen's Park clinched the final place in Division Three.

Ayr looked like they might save themselves from the drop when they took the lead through Daniel McKay at Cappielow.

They needed to win and hope that Airdrie lost to Dunfermline, but they squandered the lead and Morton took the three points they needed to make sure of finishing ahead of the Diamonds.

Morton manager James Grady told BBC Scotland: "I think the occasion got to a lot of our players - which happens.

"The full objective was to stay in the First Division. It wasn't pretty but testament to the boys - they got the job done."

But for Ayr boss Brian Reid, defeat was hard to take.

"I'm devastated. Anybody at the game today saw we were the better team and didn't get what we deserved," he said.

"I said to the players that that game summed our season up. My aim is to bounce right back up."

Stirling's hopes of finishing Second Division champions were boosted with an early Michael Mullen goal at Glebe Park.

Charlie King equalised for the hosts on 25 minutes and Albion's Brian Allison was sent off just after the break.

However, despite news filtering through that Alloa had fought back from a goal down to defeat a Cowdenbeath side who had also been reduced to 10 men 3-1, Stirling held on to secure promotion.

Alloa's Jamie Hay and Declan McAvoy are disappointed
Alloa were left disappointed at Recreation Park

The draw also meant that Brechin stayed in the fourth promotion play-off spot, with Peterhead only able to draw 1-1 with Stenhousemuir, along with Alloa and Cowdenbeath.

That point by Stenny was enough to ensure that the Larbert side remain in Division Two for another season.

They edged out Arbroath on goal difference after the Red Lichties could only draw 2-2 at home to an East Fife side who could have been left in the relegation play-off spot themselves had results gone against them on the final day.

Queen's Park earned their chance in the play-offs for a place in next season's Division Two after a 2-2 draw away to Forfar Athletic.

Albion Rovers finished a point behind the Glasgow amateurs after they could only draw 0-0 at home to Stranraer.

Forfar and East Stirlingshire join the Spiders and Arbroath in the play-offs, with Livingston having already secured promotion and Clyde being relegated to Division Three.

In the Division One play-offs, Airdrie face Brechin, while Alloa and Cowdenbeath resume their rivalry.

Division Two play-offs start with Arbroath facing Queen's Park,, while Forfar take on East Stirlingshire for a place in their final.

Division One

Champions and promoted - Inverness Caledonian Thistle
Play-off - Airdrie United
Relegated - Ayr United

Division Two

Champions and promoted - Stirling Albion
Division One play-offs - Alloa Athletic, Cowdenbeath, Brechin City
Division Three play-off - Arbroath
Relegated - Clyde

Division Three

Champions and promoted - Livingston
Division Two play-offs - Forfar Athletic, East Stirlingshire, Queen's Park
Bottom - Montrose

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see also
Morton 2-1 Ayr United
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Airdrie United 0-1 Dunfermline
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Brechin City 1-1 Stirling Albion
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Alloa Athletic 3-1 Cowdenbeath
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Stenhousemuir 1-1 Peterhead
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Arbroath 2-2 East Fife
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Forfar 1-1 Queen's Park
01 May 10 |  Scottish League
Albion Rovers 0-0 Stranraer
01 May 10 |  Scottish League

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