Stenhousemuir v Ayr United at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 30.8.14 SPFL Division One Att 669 Stenhousemuir 1 [Grehan 26] Ayr United 1 [Donnelly 12] Both teams went into this game of the back of hard fought League Cup games the previous midweek and this was to have an effect on the game. The league leaders went into the game with a 100% record and were looking to maintain their sequence of results whilst the Warriors were trying to get back to winning ways after a solitary win so far. Ayr started the game with purpose and created an opening in the 8th minute when Brian Gilmour played a ball behind the home defence for Michael Donald but his effort was well saved by Greg Fleming’s legs. Shortly after this Martyn Campbell who had been doubtful prior to the game had to retire from proceedings. The Honest Men reshaped going to a 3-5-2 formation with sub Peter McGill taking a role wide of his left. Within a minute of the enforced change the visitors took the lead when Kris Faulds made a hash of controlling the ball and Ryan Donnelly nipped in to dispossess him before firing a shot past Fleming into the net from 22 yards. Ayr were clearly having the better of the game at this stage and McGill saw an effort saved by Fleming in the 17th minute. They were to suffer another injury in the 21st minute when ex-Warrior Kevin McKinlay hobbled off with a calf injury in he 21st minute. This time the defensive reshuffle took longer to settle and Martin Grehan exploited the gap in the 23rd minute to cut in from his right touchline before forcing David Hutton into a save. Three minutes later the Warrior was to have more success passing the ball into the net from the edge of the box following a passing move that involved no fewer than seven Stenhousemuir players. The game was fairly open with both teams passing the ball well and Donald forced Fleming into another fine save before another passing move at the other end saw Grehan curl an effort just wide of the far post. The second half started well for the Warriors with Ross Meechan seeing an effort saved by David Hutton after a Ciaran Summers cross was deflected into his path. The home side came even closer in the 48th minute with a free kick that struck the crossbar. Ayr failed to clear their lines and Kieran Millar won the ball before creating an opening for himself but he was denied by a fine one handed save by Hutton. Grehan then had a header wide before Ayr were given an opportunity at the other end when Fleming failed to connect cleanly with a passback and his attempted clearance fell to Dale Shirkie who picked out Alan Forrest but his strike was saved by Fleming as he made amends for his mistake. This heralded a good spell for Ayr and Donald had a long range effort tipped over before a Forrest cross eluded everyone when it only needed a touch. The best chance though came in the 73rd minute when Brian Gilmour picked out a Nicky Devlin run behind the home defence and although the ex-Warrior did everything right in his chest control and shot he was denied by the quick reactions of Fleming who saved at almost point blank range and thus denied Devlin his first ever senior goal after more than 100 games. At the other end a long throw in by Alan Lithgow wasn’t cleared and once again Kieran Millar was first to react and once again his strike was saved by Hutton though this time it was a more routine save. As the game reached the 90th minute it was still unclear what the final result would be with Forrest firing wide for Ayr before Sean Dickson sidefooted a Josh Watt cross wide with only the keeper to beat. From the resultant goal kick the ball was played wide to Michael Donald and he played the ball behind the home defence to Ryan Donnelly who tucked the ball past the advancing keeper but luckily for Stenhousemuir the ball bounced just past the post. The final whistle blew shortly afterwards and this meant that the spoils were shared. The last home game in the league at Ochilview had seen nine goals but this match though nominally a low scoring draw was a far more entertaining game with both teams trying hard to play football and in the main succeeding. The game was more open though than the manager would like and he is going to have work hard to tighten up the ship. Stenhousemuir – Fleming, Meechan, Lithgow [b64], McMillan [b45], Summers [Watt 60], Greacen, Hodge [b82], K.Millar [b70], Grehan, Faulds [Dickson 68] and McMenamin [R.Millar 77]. Subs not used – Duncan, Doherty, Sludden and Shaw Ayr United – Hutton, Devlin, McKinlay [Shirkie 21], Campbell [McGill 11], Murphy, Gilmour, Forrest, McLaughlin, Donnelly, McGovern and Donald. Subs not used – McArthur, Roberts, Muir, McKenzie and Newman. Referee – John McKendrick Assistants – Stuart Hodge and Duncan Williams.
|August 30, 2014||3:00 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1||2014/2015||90'|
|Ochilview Park Stenhousemuir|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|