Vale of Leithen 0

Spartans 5

David Morrison at Victoria Park

THERE was an air of predictability ahead of Saturday's match as Chris Anderson only just managed to field a fully fit team to face title-chasing Spartans.

When the manager has his full compliment of players at his disposal Vale have performed well this season.

But Anderson has rarely enjoyed such luxury - and yet again on Saturday he was left with a depleted squad through injury, suspension and loan unavailability.

Spartans went in front after winning a 90-second penalty when Andy Martin pulled down Willie Bremner inside the area.

David Greenhill sent Ross Gilpin the wrong way with the spot kick.

Vale were two down on the quarter hour as Jamie Dishington was allowed far too much space to convert Greenhill's cross.

Vale began to find their way after the second goal.

And on 22 minutes Sean Stewart was chopped down by Adam Corbett for a home penalty.

But Kerr Allan's spot kick was tipped brilliantly round the post by Blair Carswell.

The penalty miss proved even more costly a couple of minutes later as Guillermo Lamarca netted a third for Spartans.

On the stroke of half time, the Spaniard added his second and Spartans' fourth from a corner.

Vale, to their credit, did create a few problems for Spartans after the break with Stewart and Tommy Patterson both going close.

Martin also tested Carswell with a powerful effort.

And in the 84th minute the Spartans keeper pulled off a tremendous double save to maintain the four-goal advantage.

Spartans finished with a flurry and Corbett added a fifth in injury time.

Vale of Leithen: R Gilpin, S Alexander, A Smith, C McBride, A Martin, A Hunter, K Allan, S Stewart, L Smith, A Lewis & T Patterson