Aberdeenshire AFA

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Great Northern Athletic Win the Chattan Rovers Cup

Great Northern Athletic 1 – 1 Ferryhill (AET), Great Northern Athletic won 4-3 on penalties

Report by Andy McLaren

Great Northern Athletic won their first trophy in only their first amateur season after a nail biting 4-3 penalty shoot-out win in the Aberdeen Trophy Centre Chattan Rovers Cup final over rivals Ferryhill at Hillhead.

The eagerly anticipated match finished 1-1 after extra time as goalkeeper David Butler was Athletic’s hero as he broke Ferryhill hearts in a pulsating match.

Aberdeen Trophy Centre representative Gregor Dick said he was “thoroughly entertained” throughout the match as he praised the “sprit” and “level of performance” from both sides.

Great Northern Athletic fielded a strong side and Lewis Mcintosh was the first to try his luck on goal inside the opening three minutes when his spectacular over head kick from inside the area flew past Phillip Brunton and crashed against the crossbar.

A 15 minute spell of constant pressure from Great Northern continued as a fizzing shot by Ryan Jamieson forced Brunton into a good save.

Ferryhill’s defence were keeping things tight but were limited to scrappy chances as their only real threat in the opening 30 minutes came from the long throw-ins of Michael Wilson.

Athletic had a goal ruled out for offside as their sidelines appealed with astonishment.

This astonishment turned to relief soon after as David Smith blasted Athletic into a 1-0 lead on 35 minutes from the penalty spot.

Ferryhill were finding it hard to get a grip of the game as they rarely tested Great Northern’s David Butler in goal before half time.

Half-time: 1 – 0

The pace and skill of David Smith and Lewis Mcintosh continued to cause Division Three leaders Ferryhill problems as they started where they left off as Smith unleashed a ferocious shot which scraped the crossbar.

Feryhill’s best chance of the game came from Grant Wood who could only head it inches wide after he was unmarked from a delightfull cross from Alan Mackie.

Both sides continued to press and it was Ferryhil’s Phillip Brunton who pulled off a sensational save to keep his side in touching distance of the cup as he somehow tipped the ball wide after a thunderous effort from Colin Webster.

Against the run of play, Ferryhill’s Graham Milne scored a spectacular goal from 30 yards as he somehow rifled a free kick into the top corner of the goal to beat David Butler at his far post.

In an increasingly end-to-end match, Butler’s opposite number, Phillip Brunton, was forced into a good save after Great Northern’s Andrew Reid failed to capitalize on a glorious opportunity to ensure his side lifted the cup.

In the last moments of extra-time, Reid reacted from point blank range to clear a header off the line from Ferryhill’s Callum Brunton.

Full Time: 1 – 1

Penalties were required and the decisive moments came with Great Northern Athletic’s first and second penalty, when Stephen Milne’s effort sailed over the bar before Ryan Jamieson saw his effort saved by Phillip Brunton.

All looked over for Great Northern Athletic but they were given hope after some excellent goalkeeping from David Butler. He saved Great Northen’s second and third penalty before Ferryhill’s Barry Dear nervously sliced his effort wide to send the supporters of Great Northern Athletic into ecstatic celebrations.

Great Northen Athletic manager Jim Mclaughlin said his side showed “great bottle” to come back in the penalty shoot-out after missing their opening two penalties.

He added: “The lads were absolutely fantastic”.