Aberdeenshire AFA

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Northern United 0 – 2 Alford

Division Two (North) at Inverdee on Saturday 24th March

Report by Andy McLaren

Alford continued their surge for promotion to Division One with a seventh league win after a hard fought victory at the expense of Northern United.

The game, and particularly the opening 45 minutes, gave a taster of why both teams were relatively close in the league as both sides cancelled out any decent attempts on goal.

Alford dominated possession but it was to be Northern who threatened in the early stages after Ross Maclennan stung the palms of Derek Taylor in the Alford goal.

However all Northern’s good work went to waste when Ritchie Taylor was unmarked and the prolific striker guided his effort into the net to open the scoring.

Moments later, Taylor was fractions away from heading a second for Alford after great play from Stuart Buchan before Buchan came close with a header which went inches over the bar.

The home side’s attack was particularly disappointing in the first half and bereft of ideas with Alford never needing to make more than scrambled clearances or well-timed blocks.

Alford were potent in the middle and up front, with the combination of Ritchie Taylor and Alistair Reid penetrating the backline with their surging runs.

Half-time: 0 – 1

Northern United were understandably dumbfounded but the goal finally drew a response from the hosts as Grant Keir’s looping header hit the bar and almost fell to Michael Bruce who was agonizingly close to grabbing an equaliser.

By the hour mark, the game had turned with Alford struggling to contain Northern, who were stringing together a series of attacks.

Northern’s Michael Bruce started to show his strengths in the air with another towering header that almost fell to Ross Maclennan who was inches from making contact with the ball.

15 minutes from time, Ross Latham doubled Alford’s lead in magnificent fashion as he unleashed a fabulous volley that soared into the corner of the net to ensure a happy return to Inverdee for the Aberdeenshire side.

Full Time: 0 – 2