Aberdeenshire AFA

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Dee Amateurs 5 – 1 Turriff Thistle

1st Touch Football Division Three at Inverdee on Saturday 26th May

Report by Scott Mcpherson

Dee Amateurs were crowned Division Three champions at the first time of asking and with a game to spare, after a comprehensive victory over a competitive Turriff Thistle.

A youthful Dee Amateurs team have taken to Amateur football like a duck to water. Walking into a fiercely competitive Third Division they have scored the most goals, conceded the least, won the most games and lost less frequency than anyone else.

Any lingering nerves for the Champions elect were extinguished 5 minutes in as Dee took an early lead. A long throw-in from the left was allowed to bounce in the 6 yard box and striker Ryan Hall was on the spot to take aim and smash the ball into the corner. The goal was a defensive nightmare, big striker Brett Aitken was a nuisance but a Turriff defender should have taken initiative and headed the ball clear.

Turriff could have instantly equalised if it wasn’t for a smart save by Dee ‘keeper Steven Ross. A free kick from inside their own half was flicked on by Turriff target man Mark Robertson for midfield runner Martin McLeod whose shot from the angle of the 6 yard box nearly snuck in at the near post.

Minutes later Ross was in action again as Turriff reacted well to going behind. An in swinging cross from winger Scott Thompson grazed the head of Robertson and Ross had to smother it wide.

Despite Turriff’s good spell it was Dee who scored next. Again, it was a goal that could have been avoided. A straight free kick was again not headed away and the ball bounced 10 yards out with Hall challenging Turriff midfielder Philip Burnett was pressured into bundling the ball into his own net as his ‘keeper came out to try and solve the problem.

Half-time: 2 – 0

Dee continued to create half chances after the interval, largely due to the scintillating form and pace of striker Ryan Hall. The majority of the chances were coming from his good play and it was his brilliance which handed Dee their third goal.

Hall picked the ball up 25 yards from goal, knocked the ball past one, shrugged off another and squeezed through two defenders on the edge of the box but his finish never merited the build-up as his tame shot was fumbled towards his strike partner Brett Aitken for a tap-in.

Turriff’s outstanding player was striker Mark Robertson and he produced the pass of the game to create a chance for his side. He curled the ball round the full back from a free kick for winger Clarke Morrison who sliced the ball wide from the right angle of the box.

If the first two goals were due to bad defending the fourth goal topped them both. The ball looked like it was rolling out for a goal kick but as the defenders switched off, Ryan Hall was lively and managed to keep the ball in play and pull the ball back to his new striker partner, substitute Josh Cowe who knocked the ball in from 4 yards. Nearly the whole side ran to celebrate with him as they knew the title was theirs.

Shortly after Turriff worked Steven Ross again, Robertson knocked the ball down to Clarke Morrison who volleyed the ball from 25 yards which needed to be tipped over. From the resulting corner, Turriff did score. A great corner from Scott Thompson was nodded towards from where it came into the corner by Martin McLeod.

However, fittingly the scoring was rounded off by the Champions. Winger Alan Forbes knocked the ball past opponent Ryan Morrison before running onto the ball and from 20 yards, smashing it into the top corner with the outside of his right foot, the ball arrowed in giving Jonathon Bisset in goal no chance.

Full Time: 5 – 1

Following the final whistle Dee players were evidently delighted, forming a huddle and singing the famous ‘champions’ chant whilst being soaked with champagne, great scenes after a whole season’s good work. As for Turriff, they finish in 5th and can be pleased with their season.