ANDY GRAHAM’S tenure as the Alloa manager had a rough start as the Wasps fell to a 3-0 defeat to Edinburgh City.

Alloa paid a visit to Meadowbank to take on the Citizens, who sat bottom of the League table after their first 13 games.

The visitors lined up with just one change from the previous win against Queen of the South, as Stefan Scougall came back into the squad.

Graham opted to go for four at the back against Edinburgh, with Euan Deveney at left back, Scott Taggart at right back and David Devine and Morgyn Neill as the starting centre halves in front of PJ Morrison.

A midfield three of Steven Hetherington, Kurtis Roberts and Scougall started ahead of the defence.

Steven Buchanan was pushed further up to start on the right wing while Taylor Steven started on the opposite side, with Ally Roy as the striker.

Bobby Wales was absent from this game as he was off to Bulgaria with the Scotland Under 19s squad.

Alloa had the first of the chances as Kurtis Roberts had a great shot go inches wide as he tested Edinburgh’s Ross McNeil.

Immediately after, Edinburgh took the lead as Robbie Mahon’s superb strike was blasted past PJ Morrison, who really couldn’t do anything to stop it.

Scougall’s return from injury was immediately felt, as he embarked on a charging run through the Edinburgh midfield to play in Ally Roy.

Roy slipped the ball towards Taylor Steven, who came under pressure from Edinburgh’s defenders before getting his shot away, which was easily saved by McNeil.

Edinburgh then doubled their lead, as Lewis Spence’s through ball cut through Alloa’s defence and found Mahon.

Mahon went one on one with Morrison and turned past him, giving him as easy tap in to give Edinburgh a two-goal advantage.

After the game, Graham said it was not the start he had hoped for, but insisted it was fine margins that separated the teams on Saturday.

“I’m really disappointed in the result,” he said. “Most of all, I don’t think we deserved that, I thought it was a really competitive game for the most part.

“It was the two boxes that let us down but I thought there was nothing between the teams and we played some really good stuff at times, I’m pleased with the way the boys played.

“I can’t question their effort or commitment, that was all there, it was just that wee bit of quality in the final third that we lacked and a wee bit of luck that didn’t go our way.”

The second half was a much tamer affair for each side, with neither goalkeeper having much to do for the majority.

Substitute Quinn Coulson found himself one on one with McNeil but went to ground after he felt a push from the Edinburgh defender.

The referee said play on, however, with no penalty being awarded for the Wasps in what could have seen Alloa mount a comeback into the game.

The Wasps had a golden opportunity to score as Roberts played a ball into Conor Sammon, who headed it down towards Scott Taggart.

Taggart couldn’t get a strong shot away under pressure from Edinburgh’s Hamilton, his effort coming off the post and falling for Sammon.

His shot hit off Fontaine, Scougall got a shot away as the ball fell to him, and Fontaine again cleared it off the Edinburgh line to deny the Wasps three goalscoring opportunities.

Graham continued: “At 2-0, we had a massive goalmouth scramble that Fontaine cleared off the line about three times in that instant alone.

“If that goes in, that gives you a wee bit of momentum. We’re disappointed to lose the game but now we move onto next week.

“I’ve said that a lot as a player. There is a lot I can learn from it as a manager and I’ll do that and there’s a lot I can learn from the game but in terms of the players, that’s done and we move onto next week to the Scottish Cup and get back on track.”

With Bobby Wales absent due to the U19s national team commitments, Graham opted to tweak the formation.

Ally Roy was deployed as a lone striker, with support from Steven and Buchanan on the wings. As Conor Sammon came off the bench, this switched slightly back towards the 3-5-2 formation seen for most of the season.

Graham explained that this was likely to be a feature under his management, with formations to become more fluid depending on who’s available and the opposition at the time.

“I’m not going to come in and have a set way that we’re playing every time,” he explained. “I’ll be much more adaptable in that regard depending on the personnel we’ve got or the opposition we’re playing.

“That’s just the way I’ll be as a manager. Obviously, we got it wrong today, we got beat 3-0.

“You can question formations and tactics but it’s those fine details in both boxes that ultimately win you games of football and lose you games of football.”

The defeat to Edinburgh leaves Alloa remaining in sixth place, with the gap between them and the play-offs extended to four points after Kelty’s win over Queen of the South.

Next up for Alloa is a trip to Dunbar in the Scottish Cup. The Wasps will face the East of Scotland Premier Division side this Saturday as they look to make it through to the fourth round.