Ayr United v Stenhousemuir at Somerset Park, Ayr on 1.9.15
Ladbrokes League One Att 1.042
Ayr United 5 [Preston 3, 47, Moore 25, Barclay og 35, Caldwell 86] Stenhousemuir 2 [Murray 17, McCroary 88]
Ayr United – Fleming, Devlin, Boyle, Docherty [b64], McLauchlan [b78], Murphy, Gilmour [Donald 67], Adams [Crawford 68], Preston, Moore [Caldwell 76] and Forrest. Subs not used – Graham, Muir, Nisbet and Newman.
Stenhousemuir – Barclay, Meechan [McCroary 75], Henderson, Malcolm [b25], Murray, Robertson, Stirling, Smith, McMenamin, McShane [Gilhaney h/t] and Cook [Eddington 84]. Subs not used – Hamilton, Marenghi, Shaw and Mazana-Martinez.
Referee – Don Robertson Assistants – Sean Carr and Kevin McElhinney
This game was brought forward from the Saturday due to the Scottish Air Show being held at Ayr and gave both teams a chance to move to joint top of the table with Forfar albeit with the Station Park side having a game in hand.
The Warriors have had a good record at Ayr in recent years whilst the home side had failed to win in their last 21 midweek matches, so the omens were looking good for Stenhousemuir. All runs have to come to an end though and by the end of the game Ayr had broken their winless streak in style going nap.
It has to be said though that they were given a helping hand by a Stenhousemuir team that were their own worst enemy and contributed in no small measure to their own downfall. The Honest Men took the lead in the third minute when Liam Henderson passed the ball blind into no mans land and Jordan Preston was quick to latch onto the ball before stroking the ball past Jamie Barclay. The Warriors picked themselves up well from this setback and they had some decent passing moves without testing Greg Fleming in the Ayr goal. Eventually in the 17th minute they drew level when Euan Murray bundled the ball home at the back post from an Alan Cook corner. Stephen Stirling had an effort fly just over a couple of minutes later and with Ayr unsettled a comedy of errors almost cost them another goal but when the ball fell to Jon McShane 20 yards out he blasted over the bar. That was as good as it got for the visitors though as they found themselves in arrears once again in the 25th minute when Craig Moore tucked the ball into the net after running through from a suspiciously looking offside position. Stuart Malcolm was booked for his protests about the goal. The game was effectively finished ten minutes later when Malcolm and Barclay got into a mix up with a ball over the top of the Stenhousemuir defence, that ended with Barclay parrying Malcolm’s header and then in a attempt to clear hooked the ball into the net.
The Warriors brought on Mark Gilhaney at half time as they tried to get back into the game but Ayr had other ideas and Preston headed over from close range almost immediately after the resumption. He didn’t have long to wait though before he got back on the score sheet getting Ayr’s fourth goal in the 47th minute when his run behind the defence wasn’t matched and he drilled the ball into the net.
Ayr were now rampant and Alan Forrest struck the woodwork with a stunning half volley from 25 yards in the 50th minute. Preston came close again minutes later. Alan Cook did test Fleming with a decent strike in the 56th minute, but the best chance for Stenhousemuir came in the 72nd minute after Gilhaney was picked out on the left but he dragged his effort wide of the target. Ayr struck the post again four minutes later through a Moore header. They did score their fifth though in the 86th minute following a pacy counter attack, after Liam McCroary lost possession deep in the Ayr half, Ross Caldwell finishing the move. McCroary to his credit didn’t let it get to him and he scored his first goal for Stenhousemuir two minutes later with a looping header from a Gilhaney cross.
The final whistle blew with Ayr leading 5-2 and they looked a better unit than last season with pace in particular from loan players Preston and Moore. Brown Ferguson though must be exacerbated though with the way that cheap goals are being given away on a regular basis. Another two injuries in the game for Cook and Ross Meechan may stretch a limited squad and they will be hoping that the extended gap before the next game will iron out some of the problems.
|September 1, 2015||7:45 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1||2015/2016||90'|
|Somerset Park, Ayr|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|