It WASN’T so much a case of “I told you so” from Clydebank boss Kieran McAnespie after his side suffered a nightmare start in their 3-1 loss at home against Kilwinning Rangers, but the gaffer revealed that he did warn his side about the dangers of slow starts against top Premiership opposition.

A makeshift Bankies defence looked shaky from the get go at Holm Park on Saturday with the Buffs happy to take advantage just three minutes in. Danger man Carlo Monti, in total isolation in the area, got on the end of a punt up the pitch before rifling it high into the net unchallenged.

Pedestrian in the build up, Clydebank couldn’t trouble a comfortable Kilwinning backline who were happy to let McAnespie’s side move the ball from side to side with a severe lack of forward passing.

Alan Vezza made way for Matt McLean on the half-hour mark but the change didn’t quite have the desired impact as the visitors went on to double their lead moments later after a diagonal ball found Ryan Wilson who placed it beyond Marc Waters.

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The visitor’s third goal arrived in first-half injury time when an Alex McWaters cross caught the Bankies defence sleeping. With time in the box, Wilson’s wild effort looked to be going well wide only for it to cannon off sub McLean and find its way into the net to round off a dire first 45.

It was inevitable that changes were going to be made at the break and Jordan Shelvey and Liam Rowan were introduced for Dylan Coll and Aaron Millar. 

The Bankies did play better in the second-half, but Kilwinning were never in any real danger as they protected their lead.

Clydebank did pull one back with 10 minutes remaining but it was too little too late as the Ayrshire side comfortably saw it out.

The gaffer was of course bitterly disappointed with the lacklustre performance and admitted pre-season fears came to fruition as the slow start cost them.

He said: “That was a poor, poor performance. Three defensive errors really cost us. They had some pace up top which caused us some problems. It wasn’t a good day at the office, it was as simple as that.

“It’s quite black and white to be honest - we were poor and they were better.

“Kilwinning are a strong team who will punish you if you give them the opportunities. We gave them the chances and they did just that.

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“I mentioned slow starts in the league cup and pre-season and how they could cost us against better opposition in the league. That’s exactly what happened here. 

“It’s not necessarily down to the boys, though. It could be down to us with the warm up or it’s something we’re doing that we need to change before the match.”

Bankies have the chance to bounce back tonight as they take on Beith at Bellsdale Park. Kick-off 7pm.

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