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West End Electrical 2 – 2 St Laurence

1st Touch Football Division Two (East) at Aulton on Saturday 28th April

Report by Scott McPherson

Although this was an end-of-season tussle between West End Electrical and St Laurence it produced a fiercely competitive game which eventually ended in stalemate.

West End’s formation was set-up to be hard to beat, starting with only one up front, making them difficult to breakdown. Despite being on the front foot for the majority of the game St Laurence managed to breach their goal through a stunning free kick and a deflection.

St Laurence started much the brighter, having a number of shots from the edge of the 18 yard box thanks to the good link play of striker Ryan Arthur. It seemed like only a matter of time before St Laurence would take the lead but, totally against the run of play, their hosts scored the first goal of the game.

A long free kick from inside his own half from Captain Scott McLaren was only headed clear, before it fell to Ricky Milne 6 yards out whose effort squirmed narrowly inside the post.

This goal rejuvenated West End and they would have scored again shortly after if it wasn’t for a fantastic last ditch tackle from defender Paul Ferguson, denying Greg Nadsay as he looked destined to score.

West End’s good play was all coming through striker Ricky Adamson. Despite not being the most mobile of lone striker, his link up and bringing others into play was superb. It was no surprise that it was Adamson himself who made it 2-0.

Adamson and defender Doug Harley went shoulder to shoulder 30 yards from goal, Harley felt he had been impeded and stopped playing demanding a free kick whilst Adamson turned, ran towards goal and slotted past Hadden from 10 yards.

Schoolboy defending by Harley, everyone knows that you should always play to the whistle. His fellow defenders were also culpable as they allowed the striker to run all of 20 yards unchallenged.

10 minutes from half-time St Laurence halved the deficit. It came through their biggest threat Ryan Arthur. The striker curled a 30 yard free kick over the wall, out of the reach of David Rattray. The ball wasn’t right in the corner but it was a magnificent, powerful free kick.

Minutes before half-time Arthur should have had his, and St Laurence’s, second of the game. Midfielder Paul Cameron played an exquisite ball with the outside of his left foot in between two defenders where Arthur was waiting. His poked effort from 12 yards looked destined for the net before Rattray stuck out his right leg to turn it wide.

Half-time: 2 – 1

As the second-half commenced as you would expect, St Laurence continued to press but the two sides created a chance each early on.

Firstly St Laurence’s Ryan Arthur chipped the ball through for striker partner Cal Cragie who tried to knee the ball over the on rushing goalkeeper but couldn’t quite get it high enough as Rattray grasped onto the ball.

At the other end substitute Paul Rennie nearly scored with his first touch. A quick throw-in played Nadsay in up the line, he cut in and the ball fell to Rennie who could only blast the ball at Hadden from a tight angle.

As the game wore on there were continued stoppages which were interrupting the flow of the game which was positive for West End as they tried to hold on. However, they were dealt a blow when goalkeeper David Rattray was forced off injured and striker Ricky Adamson had to put on the gloves.

Surprisingly, the stand-in ‘keeper was relatively untroubled until 5 minutes from time, when he had to pick the ball up out of his net. After both Paul Cameron and Gareth Reid had flashed shots wide and over respectively, St Laurence did score.

The ball bounced 25 yards from goal and it was met by a thunderous strike by Paul Cameron on his sweet left foot which hit a defender in the box and arrowed into the far corner, rippling the side netting. Nothing Adamson could do to stop it.

Full-Time: 2 – 2