Arbroath 2 Forfar Athletic 1 (League One) 25th November 2017

Despite going ahead, Forfar Athletic lost out to a last minute winner from Bobby Linn as Arbroath took all three points in the second Angus derby of the season.

David Cox put the Loons in front early on but Leighton McIntosh and Linn turned the game round in the Red Lichties’ favour for Forfar’s first league loss in four games.

Jim Weir made three changes following their Scottish Cup exit with Michael Kennedy, Lewis Milne and Scott Lochhead replaced by Patrick Cregg, Conor Quigley and Ousman See.

The opening stages of the game were nothing more than a midfield battle with a few hard challenges going in that were perhaps fortunate not to result in cards being shown.

The first chance of the game came in the ninth minute after Ricky Little barged Eddie Malone over on the edge of the box and received the first caution of the game.

Dylan Easton, Darren Whyte and David Cox stood over the set piece and the former two laid the ball off for Cox to curl past David Hutton to put Forfar ahead.

Arbroath had to clear their lines in the 17th minute when Easton’s ball was flicked on by Matthew Aitken inside the area with Blair Yule clearing the danger.

A minute later Yule had an effort blocked before Malone was next to be booked for a rash challenge on former Loon Danny Denholm. The free kick on the edge of the box saw Ryan McCord hit the bar with Marc McCallum beaten.

McCord curled wide for the hosts but he was involved in their equaliser just after the half hour mark; his corner found Thomas O’Brien and despite his header being cleared off the line McIntosh reacted first to stab home.

Arbroath could have been ahead before half time with another McCord assist but Colin Hamilton couldn’t divert his header on target.

The Loons almost grabbed a second just twenty seconds into the second half when Conor Quigley’s cross hit the bar with Hutton scrambling to try and get a hand to it.

Easton sliced wide from a Cox corner when he should have done better while McCallum denied Yule after David Gold made his way down the right wing before cutting the ball back.

McCord saw his effort held by the Loons keeper with both sides looking to find a winner as the game entered the final twenty minutes.

Forfar were dealt a massive blow in the 71st minute when Cox pulled up attempting to chase a long ball; he tried to run the injury off but had to be substituted in yet another injury problem for Jim Weir.

See was unlucky not to connect with a Bain cross shortly before Hutton had to look sharp to tip another Quigley cross over the bar.

Red Lichties captain Mark Whatley fired wide in the 78th minute meanwhile at the other end Bain and See combined to send the ball into the area with sub Lewis Milne inches away from getting a touch on the cross.

Lochhead should have done better with his shot inside the area as he blasted over; Milne going closer with a long range free kick as his powerful shot forced a save from Hutton.

The Loons have conceded many times in the final five minutes this season and Arbroath added to that list in the 89th minute; a free kick caused problems inside the box and it ended up at the feet of Bobby Linn who lifted the ball over McCallum. Forfar may have felt hard done by with calls for offside from the defence but the officials had ruled Bain to be playing Linn onside.

Forfar were unable to carve out any late chances and leave Gayfield with no points, arguably less than they deserved but they move on to next week’s clash at Airdrieonians.

Arbroath: David Hutton, Ricky Little, Colin Hamilton, Thomas O’Brien, Blair Yule, Mark Whatley, Bobby Linn, Scott Martin (Bryan Prunty 81), Ryan McCord, Leighton McIntosh (Kane Hester 75), Danny Denholm (David Gold 24)

Subs not used: Jamie Henry, Ricky Gomes (gk)

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Jamie Bain, Conor Quigley, Darren Whyte, Michael Travis, Eddie Malone, Ousman See (Josh Peters 88), Patrick Cregg, David Cox (Scott Lochhead 71), Dylan Easton (Lewis Milne 80), Matthew Aitken

Subs not used: Greg Warwick, Scott McBride, Conner Duthie, Grant Adam (gk)

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Queen’s Park 1 Forfar Athletic 1 (League One) 14th October 2017

Jim Weir’s reign at Forfar Athletic started with a point as Queen’s Park equalised late on to deny the Loons at Hampden Park.

Mark Millar put Forfar ahead from the penalty spot just after the hour mark after Dylan Easton was fouled but Luke Donnelly salvaged a point for the Spiders to keep things as they were at the foot of League One.

Forfar could have went ahead as early as the second minute when Dylan Easton cut the ball back for Josh Peters but the striker’s effort was deflected wide.

From Mark Millar’s corner, Michael Travis rose highest but couldn’t get his header on target.

At the other end Dominic Docherty forced a great save from Marc McCallum after meeting a Ciaran Summers cross before Peters hooked his shot wide in the sixth minute.

David Galt sent a corner into the box four minutes later however Kevin Green headed over the bar.

The action was scarce for large parts of the first half with little happening until the 24th minute when Anton Brady flashed a volley wide following another Galt corner.

Two minutes later Bain sent a cross towards Easton with Willie Muir holding his header towards goal.

Brady hooked wide for the visitors before Easton almost caught out Muir with a free kick from the touch line but he did well to smother the effort.

Forfar had the last chance of the first half as Peters broke forward before switching the ball to Marc Scott; he managed to get a shot towards goal but Muir pushed the shot away before it was cleared.

Both sides started the second half well with Cox and Galt denied by each defence in the opening two minutes.

McCallum did well to push a Thomas Orr shot over following some excellent movement from the Spiders’ striker.

Peters mishit the ball wide from outside the box after receiving a Scott McBride flick on in the 54th minute before McCallum denied the hosts again sixty seconds.

McBride stabbed wide but the Loons took the lead in the 65th minute from the spot; Easton was fouled by Jack Iredale and Mark Millar stepped up to send the penalty under Muir.

The last twenty minutes saw little to no action until the 88th minute when sub Luke Donnelly netted an equaliser despite claims for offside from the Loons.

Former Loon Gregor Fotheringham could have won it for the hosts in injury time when he met a Donnelly cross but McCallum pulled off another great save.

At the other end Ousman See sent a through ball for Millar however he dragged his shot wide as both sides had to settle for a point apiece.

Queen’s Park: Muir, Millen, Summers, Fotheringham, K Green, Iredale, Galt (McLennan 71), Docherty (Donnelly 71), Orr (Duff 71), Brady, Burns

Subs not used: Cummins, Gibson, D Green, White.

Forfar Athletic: McCallum, Bain, Quigley, Whyte, Travis, Millar, Cox (Aitken 72), Scott, Peters (See 61), Easton (Cregg 87), McBride

Subs not used: Cregg, Kennedy, Mackintosh, Warwick, Adam (gk)

Forfar Athletic 1 Stranraer 1 (League One) 30th September 2017

A last minute equaliser denied the Loons their second win of the season as they drew 1-1 with Stranraer at Station Park.

After going ahead through Josh Peters in the third minute, interim managers Stuart Balmer and Barry Sellars’ side conceded with the final kick of the ball when Danny Stoney nabbed a point for the visitors.Four changes were made from the heavy defeat to East Fife with Simon Mensing, Michael Kennedy, Marc Scott and Patrick Cregg replaced by Michael Travis, Conor Quigley, Jim Lister and Scott McBride.

Forfar were rewarded for some early pressure in the third minute; Jim Lister spraying the ball out wide to Scott McBride and his low cross was touched on by Darren Whyte for a defender to clear as far as Josh Peters who sent the ball past Belford for his first goal since returning to the club.

They were dealt a blow in the 14th minute as Lister pulled up when running and was forced off to be replaced by Ousman See.

A minute later Belford almost cost Stranraer as he struggled to hold Mark Millar’s dangerous corner but the Loons couldn’t force the ball over the line.

David Cox and Jamie Bain combined well on the right wing for the latter to swing a cross in just before the hour mark; Peters seeing his effort deflected wide.

Peters was denied again by the visitors defence from a Millar delivery and Stranraer were unlucky not to equalise shortly after as Grant Anderson found Scott Agnew but Agnew’s close range shot was saved by Marc McCallum.

In the 37th minute a ball into the box was cleared as far as Eddie Malone 25 yards out but his well struck effort was blocked by a defender with the hosts claiming for handball.

Agnew tested McCallum two minutes after half time with an excellent free kick that the keeper had to tip over.

The Loons had a few chances to add to their tally shortly after with Cox and Peters twice denied by Belford from close range.

In the 65th minute Bain and See combined to set up Cox but his effort was parried by the keeper before he eventually collected the loose ball.

Stranraer sub Kyle Turner couldn’t find the target from distance a minute later after doing well to make space for himself.

See and Cox came close again for Forfar but failed to finish before Turner curled over at the other end.

In the 83rd minute Scott McBride nodded over from another Millar corner but at the other end the visitors should have equalised when Agnew sent a swirling effort towards goal; McCallum did well to parry the shot but Stranraer sub Stephen Okoh scooped the ball over from six yards with the goal gaping.

Stranraer did go one better with the last kick of the game when Morgyn Neill floated a ball towards goal; the flick on from this was met by Danny Stoney and he chested it down before slipping the ball past McCallum.

Forfar can feel hard done by following this and they now face a two week wait before their next game when they travel to Hampden to take on Queen’s Park.

Forfar Athletic: McCallum, Bain, Quigley, Millar, Whyte, Travis, Cox, McBride, Lister (See 14), Peters, Malone (Aitken 82)

Subs not used: Warwick, Cregg, Mackintosh, Scott, King (gk)

Stranraer: Belford, Robertson, Neill, Lang (Stoney 40), Woods (Okoh 66), Bell, Wallace (Turner 28), Agnew, Anderson, Hamill, Thomson

Subs not used: Elliott, Gray, McGowan, Currie

Forfar Athletic 0 Arbroath 5 (League One) 16th September 2017

Forfar Athletic’s poor form continued with one of the heaviest derby defeats in recent history as Arbroath defeated them 5-0 at Station Park.

The Loons last lost by a five goal margin to the Red Lichties in 1971 but a Ryan McCord double along with goals from Thomas O’Brien, Kane Hester and Bobby Linn ensured Dick Campbell’s side extended Forfar’s poor start to the season with just one win in eleven games.

Gary Bollan made three changes from the defeat at Alloa a week ago with Michael Travis, Conor Quigley and Jim Lister starting while Michael Kennedy and Josh Peters dropped to the bench; Rodrigue Nanitelamio missing from the squad completely.

After a slow start, the Loons had the first clear opportunity eleven minutes in when Marc Scott made his way down the left wing before his shot was parried by David Hutton before being cleared.

At the other end former Forfar winger Danny Denholm, playing up front for the visitors, was causing problems for the defence along with Omar Kader. The latter delivered a perfect through ball for Denholm in the 15th minute but McCallum did well to deny him when one on one.

A minute later Denholm’s corner was headed wide by Thomas O’Brien before the winger waltzed past defenders shortly after only to fire into the arms of McCallum.

A Colin Hamilton long ball found the ever dangerous Denholm in the 28th minute and he cut past Mensing before seeing his effort deflected wide.

Ryan McCord tested McCallum after the half hour mark while the Loons saw shots from Mark Millar and Ousman See blocked.

Arbroath were awarded a fantastic opportunity to take the lead four minutes before the break when Simon Mensing fouled O’Brien in the box. McCord stepped up and sent McCallum the wrong way from the penalty spot.

They were almost gifted a second on the stroke of half time when a low cross was diverted onto the post by Conor Quigley before being cleared.

The visitors extended their lead six minutes after the break and it was a former Loon who netted. Hamilton beat Mensing to a corner and his header was pushed away by McCallum only for O’Brien to rifle a volley into the bottom corner.

Despite the scoreline, McCallum pulled off a few good saves and he denied Denholm again shortly after before Jamie Bain sent a long range effort wide at the other end.

David Cox saw his shot diverted wide after a Marc Scott cut back on the hour mark but it was Arbroath who netted again in the 68th minute. Mark Millar’s header back was short and McCord beat Mensing to the ball before firing home for his second.

Kader lashed over 60 seconds later however it wasn’t long before the fourth arrived for a dominating Arbroath side.

Kane Hester was introduced to the game in the 78th minute and within sixty seconds he was on the scoresheet; O’Brien rising above Mensing to head a Linn free kick down for Hester to bundle home

Sub Eddie Malone came close for the Loons late on but it was Arbroath who had the final say in the game when Mensing pulled back Hester inside the area for their second penalty.

Linn stepped up to fire home for his first and a deserved fifth of the afternoon for Arbroath.

The result means that the Loons stay at the bottom of League One with just three points from their opening six games before their trip to East Fife next week.

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Jamie Bain, Conor Quigley, Patrick Cregg, Michael Travis, Simon Mensing, David Cox, Mark Millar, Ousman See (Josh Peters 61), Jim Lister (Dylan Easton 72), Marc Scott (Eddie Malone 72)

Subs not used: Matthew Aitken, Greg Warwick, Michael Kennedy, Jason King (gk)

Arbroath: David Hutton, Jamie Henry, David Gold, Colin Hamilton, Thomas O’Brien, Mark Whatley (Ricky Little 83), Omar Kader (Kane Hester 78), Blair Yule, Ryan McCord (Gary Fraser 78), Danny Denholm, Bobby Linn

Subs not used: Bryan Prunty, Ricky Gomes (gk)

Raith Rovers 3 Forfar Athletic 1 (League One) 19th August 2017

Ten man Forfar Athletic were defeated 3-1 at the home of title contenders Raith Rovers on Saturday.

Despite Forfar going ahead through Mark Millar, Raith took all three points after Lewis Vaughan, Liam Buchanan and Greig Spence all netted.

Five changes were made after the midweek defeat in Dingwall with Andy Munro, Ousman See, Marc Scott and Patrick Cregg replaced by Scott McBride, Simon Mensing, Jim Lister and latest signing Rodrigue Nanitelamio. Conor Quigley was injured in the warm up as Michael Kennedy took his place.

Less than a minute in the hosts had their first chance with Simon Mensing doing well to deny Greig Spence inside the box.

Mark Millar saw his shot parried by Rovers debutant Rory Brian before a defender blocked a fierce Dylan Easton volley in the tenth minute.

Two minutes later Lewis Vaughan came close with a free kick meanwhile at the other end Eddie Malone fired over after Raith failed to clear their lines.

The deadlock was broken after 17 minutes; Mark Millar sending a stunning 20 yard free kick into the top corner for his fifth goal of the season.

Rovers looked for a quick equaliser through Buchanan however his effort was saved by Marc McCallum.

They did equalise on the half hour mark; Vaughan ending a run forward with a smart finish past the keeper.

McCallum denied Barr and Buchanan in quick succession and Forfar were dealt a blow in the 39th minute; Jamie Bain fouling Buchanan on the edge of the box for a red card.

Lister and Millar combined six minutes into the second half as the former’s through ball found the latter and despite Millar’s touch taking him away from goal, his shot was deflected wide for a corner.

From the corner the debutant Rodrigue Nanitelamio had a header cleared away with Cox curling over minutes later.

Kevin McHattie had a great chance to put Raith ahead in the 56th minute but could only blast over; his shot landing a couple of rows away from the back of the stand.

The hosts’ main threat seemed to be Lewis Vaughan, with the wide man causing problems for the Loons with a cross-cum-shot that McCallum had to look sharp to tip over.

Cox had another effort deflected wide while Vaughan was denied by McCallum yet again in the 69th minute.

Vaughan was determined to net another but could only watch as his shot after 72 minutes was deflected into the arms of the Loons keeper.

Ross Callachan had a low driven effort parried by McCallum as the game entered the final ten minutes.

Scott McBride fired over after a beat one two with Millar but it was Vaughan involved yet again in the 84th minute when his low cross was touched past McCallum by Buchanan to give Raith the lead.

The lead was extended two minutes later; Simon Mensing’s header back to McCallum was short and Spence nipped in to slot home for Raith’s third.

Spence could have added a fourth in added time but saw his close range shot deflected past the post.

The result means Forfar drop to ninth ahead of their next home game against Albion Rovers.

Raith Rovers: Rory Brian, Jason Thomson, Kevin McHattie, Ross Callachan, Kyle Benedictus, Greig Spence, Scott Robertson (Jonny Court 79), Liam Buchanan (Ross Matthews 85), Lewis Vaughan, Bobby Barr, Iain Davidson

Subs not used: Yaw Osei, Euan Murray, David McKay, James Berry

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Jamie Bain, Michael Kennedy, Eddie Malone, Rodrigue Nanitelamio, Simon Mensing, David Cox (Patrick Cregg 75), Mark Millar, Jim Lister (Ousman See 82), Dylan Easton (Michael Travis 39), Scott McBride

Subs not used: Andy Munro, Matthew Aitken, Conor Quigley, Jason King (gk)

Ross County U20 2 Forfar Athletic 1 (Irn Bru Cup First Round) 15th August 2017

Forfar Athletic exited the Irn Bru Cup at the first hurdle following a 2-1 defeat to Ross County’s U20 side in Dingwall.

Goals from Billy McKay and Ross Maciver in the first half had the Staggies ahead and despite Mark Millar’s late free kick, the Loons couldn’t pull it back.

Forfar came into this after a 3-0 defeat at Ayr United while the young Staggies, including experienced striker Billy McKay, were not to be taken lightly after their SPFL Development League win last season.

The Loons made three changes from their weekend defeat with Andy Munro, Ousman See and debutant Patrick Cregg replacing Jim Lister, Michael Travis and the injured Simon Mensing.

Dylan Easton had the first opportunity in the fifth minute when David Cox’s cross was headed down by Marc Scott but the midfielder’s shot was blocked and eventually cleared.

County were unlucky not to go ahead two minutes later; James Wallace did well to get a shot away off balance however his effort crashed off the post with McCallum beaten.

Easton curled over shortly after but it was the hosts who took the lead after 24 minutes. Russell Dingwall teed up Billy McKay and he expertly lobbed McCallum. It was 2-0 within three minutes as Ross Maciver slotted home from inside the box.

Greg Morrison saw his shot turned over the bar by McCallum before McKay was also denied as the Staggies looked to add to their tally.

Forfar were unlucky not to pull one back on the stroke of half time; Patrick Cregg setting up Easton however his long range effort flew just over the bar.

Andy Munro nodded over from a Millar corner a minute into the second half before McKay saw a header held by McCallum at the other end.

Millar fired over in the 49th minute and from the goal kick, County were instantly on the attack with Morrison having his shot tipped wide.

Another Millar corner created a stramash that ended with Munro’s powerful strike blocked by Morrison as the game approached the hour mark.

In the 63rd minute a Conor Quigley throw was flicked on by Ousman See; allowing Michael Travis to connect with a volley that Ross Munro smothered.

Two minutes later Morrison weaved his way past two defenders but couldn’t net County’s third as his shot rattled the bar.

A long ball by Aitken up to Jim Lister was just inches too heavy by the youngster as the County keeper nipped it away before Lister could get a shot away.

Wallace thought he had scored with eight minutes left when he slipped the ball under McCallum but Munro did well to clear the ball off the line.

Forfar did pull a goal back in the 87th minute to give themselves some hope with a Millar free kick. See and Munro had efforts off target in injury time but the Staggies held on to go through to the next round.

Ross County U20: Ross Munro, Tom Kelly, Kyle Johnson, Sam Morrison, Tom Grivosti, Max Ashmore, Greg Morrison, Russell Dingwall, Billy McKay (Nathan Turner 66), James Wallace, Ross Maciver

Subs not used: Ben Johnston, Mark Gallagher, Jack Murray, Jack Grant, Joel MacBeath, Lee Herbert (gk)

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Jamie Bain, Conor Quigley, Patrick Cregg, Andy Munro, Eddie Malone, David Cox (Jim Lister 46), Mark Millar, Ousman See, Dylan Easton (Michael Travis 53), Marc Scott (Matthew Aitken 40)

Subs not used: Greg Warwick, Scott McBride, Michael Kennedy, Jason King (gk)

Ayr United 3 Forfar Athletic 0 (League One) 12th August 2017

Forfar Athletic were comfortably defeated 3-0 in their first away game in League One at Ayr United on Saturday.

Goals from Craig Moore and Declan McDaid had United ahead at half time before Robbie Crawford completed the scoring late in the second half.

The Loons made just one change from their opening day win over Airdrieonians, Ousman See dropping to the bench in favour of Dylan Easton.

The hosts had the first chance of the game six minutes in when Craig Moore nodded wide from a Craig McGuffie cross.

A counter attack on the quarter hour mark led to Marc Scott setting up Dylan Easton and the midfielder forced a terrific save from Jordan Hart.

Simon Mensing had a header cleared off the line with Eddie Malone’s follow up cleared shortly before Michael Moffat and Paddy Boyle were denied by Marc McCallum at the other end.

Ayr were awarded a penalty in the 32nd minute after Michael Travis was adjudged to have held Moffat; the hosts angered by the referee’s decision to award the spot kick after Michael Rose had netted.

Craig Moore stepped up to take the spot kick and was denied by McCallum, however the striker found the net with the rebound.

Malone headed wide from Jamie Bain’s cross as Forfar looked for a leveller, but it was the hosts who found the net again just four minutes after going ahead when Andy Geggan’s ball was flicked over the head of McCallum by Declan McDaid.

Travis powered a header over from another Millar corner on the stroke of half time.
Just five minutes into the second half and Malone was unlucky not to pull a goal back for the Loons; a Bain cross was met by a diving header and Hart had to look sharp to deny the former Ayr man.

Cox had an effort held before McGuffie was denied by an excellent save at the other end just before the hour mark.
Easton did well to win the ball back on the edge of the box in the 61st minute before cutting the ball back; Lister beating Hart but seeing his shot cleared off the line by Higgins.

There were chances wasted at both ends in quick succession as Moore sent an effort over the stand before Scott lobbed Hart at the other end; the ball landing on the roof of the net.

Former Loons loanee Rose curled a free kick over but they extended their lead with ten minutes left when Alan Forrest set up Crawford and he slipped the ball under the keeper.

Sub Ousman See had a couple of late chances to net a consolation with Easton also firing over but it wasn’t to be for Forfar against a strong Ayr side.

Ayr United: Jordan Hart, Chris Higgins, Paddy Boyle, Michael Rose, Andy Geggan, Michael Moffat (Alan Forrest 69), Robbie Crawford, Craig Moore, Declan McDaid (Brian Gilmour 75), Craig McGuffie (Craig Reid 62), Ross Docherty

Subs not used: David Ferguson, Stuart Faulds, Leon Murphy, Lyle Avci (gk)

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Jamie Bain, Conor Quigley, Eddie Malone (Scott McBride 74), Michael Travis, Simon Mensing, David Cox (Matthew Aitken 83), Mark Millar, Jim Lister (Ousman See 74), Dylan Easton, Marc Scott

Subs not used: Andy Munro, Greg Warwick, Michael Kennedy, Jason King (gk)