Review of 2006 (1)

The year started in the worst possible fashion with a Scottish Cup humiliation at Love Street. Okay, the team was changed a little from our usual line up (Alan McCormack at right back for example) but the shambolic nature of our capitulation was a huge let down. St Mirren destroyed us by 3-0 and the cup dream was over for another year.

We played well in January against both halves of the old firm but picked up no points and by the time we dropped more points at East End Park in a 1-1 draw our top six chances were hanging by threads. The signings of McGarry and Abel Thermeus (who? Exactly) were made and while McGarry seemed a useful squad player the Frenchman did little of note other than get sent off at Rugby Park in his short spell at Fir Park.

CIS Semi Final Team

Despite the horrific January we endured hopes were high when we travelled to Hampden for a League Cup semi final against Celtic. We took the lead but, despite being pegged back, we were the better team and we looked set to take the match into extra time. There is no point in dwelling on the Corrigan/Smith debacle but with a mediocre Dunfermline side waiting in the final it was clear that we had blown a glorious chance of silverware. We turned in a fair performance at Killie but went down 2-0 before a couple of goals from Richie Foran gave us our first win of the year with a success over Dundee United. Despite losing the next game 3-0 we were about to embark on a five game unbeaten run to finish off the regular season with a solid run. A do or die win in Inverness and a last minute scrape past Livi sandwiched a win over Falkirk and draws with Aberdeen and Hibs. Ultimately it turned out we needed to win in Aberdeen as our last game before the split was at Ibrox. We worked hard and our 1-0 loss turned out to be academic as the Dons defeated Hibs to ensure their top six place.

The lost revenue was a blow as contract negotiations with Corrigan and Hammell looked grim. However the background events were sweetness and light compared to our form on the pitch - we took one home point out of nine from the lower half fixtures and our only victory came at the already relegated Livingston.

Terry Butcher decided his future lay elsewhere and he set off to manage Sydney FC down under. Stevie Hammell went to Southend but Corrigan signed on for another few years. Butcher was replaced by his former assistant Maurice Malpas. Many people may were nervous at the speed of Malpas' coronation as our manager but it was nearly universally agreed he had earned the opportunity and there were few voices of dissent when the appointment was made.

Mo's first problem was to fill the gaps created by the end of season departures and to appoint a second in command. Paul Hegarty was in post by the end of May but there was no news of signings for the playing staff by the time the club shut up shop for the summer break.

Review of 2006 Part 2

The Year in Review 2005

The Year in Review: 2004

The Year in Review: 2003

The Year in Review: 2002

The Year in Review: 2001