Falkirk were forced to settle for a point in the opening match of the 2022/2023 cinch League One season against Montrose.

Both teams started the opening match of the league campaign competitively, with a flurry of half chances being created in the opening exchanges of the match. Montrose came the closest, however, when PJ Morrison could only parry a curing shot from the edge of the area – the second ball was then quickly hoovered up by the Falkirk number one.

The visiting side continued to pressure the Falkirk back-line and found the ball in the back of the net, but this was instantly ruled offside by the linesman. Shortly after Morrison was again called into action, comfortably hanging on to a shot from distance by Graham Webster.

Falkirk were not without their own chances, creating nice periods of play in the opposition half. One such move resulted in a low-driven shot from Sean Mackie being cleared from danger by Kerr Waddell in the Montrose defence.

Mackie again caused the visiting side issues with a lovely, looped ball finding its way to the feet of Callumn Morrison on the left flank. The Falkirk number seven showed great skill to force his way into the Montrose area, his strike was then well saved by the opposition keeper, and Aidan Nesbitt went narrowly wide after latching onto the parried ball.

Towards the later stages of the first period, Montrose mounted a charge, in spite of this The Bairns were able to weather the storm with the half finishing goalless.

Moments after the game reconvened Falkirk created two quick chances. A well-worked passage of play found Ryan Williamson deep into the opposition penalty area, but the Falkirk right back was unable to find a way through the numerous Montrose players with his shot being deflected away from danger. Gary Oliver then fashioned his own chance, but the ball again was blocked and cleared.

Mark Whatley looked almost certain to have given Montrose the lead as the head of Waddell guided a corner to the opposition player’s feet. Fortunately, the Falkirk defence did enough to pressure Whatley and he fired wide of the post.

From a similar set piece, but at the opposite side of the pitch, Brad McKay headed narrowly over as the Bairns sought a goal of their own which would see them take the lead.

A piercing through ball from Stephen McGinn found substitute Juan Alegria one-on-one with the opposition keeper, however, the Columbian was unable to find a way past the keeper with his shot being well blocked by Ross Sinclair in the Montrose goal.

With the match fast approaching its conclusion, Falkirk looked to grab the goal which would break the deadlock. Craig McGuffie picked the ball up in the opposition’s half and dispatched a powerful strike toward the goal, however, Sinclair was able to place himself in front of the ball and parry it away.

This would be the last real opportunity in the match for Falkirk, who had to settle for a point in the first fixture of their league campaign. Attention now turns towards next weekend, as the Bairns travel to Airdrie to take on Airdrieonians at The Excelsior Stadium.

Full-Time: Falkirk 0-0 Montrose

Attendance: 3682 (80 away)

Falkirk: PJ Morrison (GK), Williamson, McGinn ©, Donaldson, C. Morrison, Hetherington, Nesbitt, Yeats, Oliver, McKay, Mackie

Subs: Martin, Alegria, McGuffie, Ross, Wilson, Sneddon, Connolly, McCann, Carroll

Montrose: Sinclair (GK), Webster, Waddell, Dillon, Steeves, Masson, Callaghan, Milne, Johnston, McAllister, Lyons.

Subs: Watson, Quinn, Whatley, MacKinnon, Gardyne, Rennue, Wright, Lennox

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