Dundee 2 Forfar Athletic 1 (Scottish League Cup) 27th August 2013

Dundee            2       Forfar Athletic    1

McAlister 50               I Campbell 42 (pen)

MacDonald 120+2

Forfar Athletic lost out to a very, very late goal to go out of the League Cup 2-1 to last week’s Ramsdens Cup opponents Dundee at Dens Park again after a controversial decision by ref Barry Cook.

The Loons made five changes from Saturday’s game against Brechin, with returning loanee Dale Hilson, Gavin Malin, Chris Templeman, Stuart Malcolm and Darren Dods replacing Bryan Deasley, Marvin Andrews, Neil McCabe, Martyn Fotheringham and Paul McManus.

Dundee started off the stronger side, with Ryan Conroy and Jim McAlister seeing efforts crash off the cross bar before Forfar’s first chance came in the tenth minute, passes between the two Gavin’s, Swankie and Malin ended with Swankie curling his attempt past Kyle Letheren’s post.

Three minutes later Dundee piled more pressure on Forfar when Conroy fired straight at Darren Hill before Peter MacDonald saw his header saved well.

Until the 42nd minute, there were no clear cut chances for either side, a cross into the box saw Declan Gallagher climb all over Templeman in his attempts to reach the ball and the ref blew for a penalty, booking Gallagher. Iain Campbell stepped up to take it and sent his penalty low and out of the reach of the keeper to give the visitors the lead.

The Loons almost went two up on the stroke of half time, Chris Templeman and Gavin Swankie combining to set up Malin, who stabbed his effort at the keeper.

HALF TIME: Dundee 0 Forfar Athletic 1

Dundee started the second half strong, looking for an equaliser, and they got it in the 50th minute, McAlister collected the ball in near the Forfar box, turned a defender, ran towards goal and sent away a low shot that beat Hill and ended up in the net.

Forfar almost took the lead again, this time a long ball from Mark Baxter saw the Dundee defence leave it and Gavin Swankie took the opportunity to run for it and hit a half volley that Letheren did well to save.

McAlister headed straight at Hill again before Peter MacDonald fired over in the 59th minute.

Forfar had another chance after 62 minutes, a cross from Gavin Swankie went to the back post and Templeman flashed his effort across goal.

Dundee went down to ten men in the 67th minute, Kevin McBride decided it would be a good idea to throw himself to ground 30 yards from goal, earning himself a second yellow.

The closest Dundee came to grabbing a winner was in the 80th minute, an effort from Gavin Rae was cleared off the line by Iain Campbell.

Both sides saw headers held in injury time before the ref blew for full time, which meant the game went to extra time.

END OF NORMAL TIME: Dundee 1 Forfar Athletic 1

Very little happened in the first half of extra time, Conroy sending a shot miles wide for Dundee, while Gary Fusco did the same for Forfar before Ross Campbell had an attempt saved by Letheren.

Barry Cook evened up the red card he gave Dundee earlier in the 105th minute, Stuart Malcolm pushing a player off of the ball, earning him his second yellow of the evening.

Dundee were able to pressure the Loons after that, Jim McAlister nodding against the bar and missing a sitter while sub Martin Boyle had an effort go past the post.

Forfar did have their own chances though, Gavin Swankie’s turn and shot going wide of the mark before Paul McManus had a volley deflected into Letheren’s arms.

They also came the closest they have in extra time, with five minutes left a free kick from Mark Baxter was sent deep into the Dundee box and the ball was met by the head of Swankie, but his header was caught by Letheren, who fumbled on the line before gathering again.

Dundee scored deep into injury time, Gary Fusco won the ball in an aerial challenge, but Martin Boyle fell to the ground underneath him and Barry Cook deemed that worthy of a free kick, despite no foul occurring. Peter MacDonald stepped up and curled in a brilliant free kick, like he had last week, into the top corner out of Darren Hill’s reach.

FULL TIME: Dundee 1 Forfar Athletic 1

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Dale Hilson – did well on his return to the club.

Dundee: Kyle Letheren, Gary Irvine, Matthew Lockwood, Willie Dyer, Kevin McBride, Peter MacDonald, Gavin Rae, Ryan Conroy, Carlo Monti (Martin Boyle 74), Declan Gallagher, Jim McAlister.

Subs not used: James Thomson, Jamie Reid, Thomas Carberry, Dan Twardzik.

Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill, Mark Baxter, Iain Campbell, Stuart Malcolm, Darren Dods, Gary Fusco, Omar Kader, Gavin Malin (James Dale 97), Chris Templeman (Ross Campbell 97), Gavin Swankie, Dale Hilson (Paul McManus 85).

Subs not used: Marvin Andrews, Rab Douglas.

Bookings: Kevin McBride, Declan Gallagher, Matthew Lockwood (Dundee) Stuart Malcolm, Darren Dods, Mark Baxter, Gary Fusco (Forfar Athletic)

Red Cards: Kevin McBride (Dundee) Stuart Malcolm (Forfar Athletic)

Referee: Barry Cook

Attendence: 2,027

Late comeback earns Farmington point

Hamilton Academical     2    Forfar Farmington    2

McCulloch 45                            Heron 78

Richardson 52                          Godfrey 90+1

Forfar Farmington kept their record of being unbeaten since the SWPL split after coming back from behind to draw 2-2 with Hamilton Academical at John Cumming Stadium in Carluke on Sunday.

Farmington made four changes from the 8-0 win over Kilwinning two weeks ago with keeper Leonie Simpson, Jade McLaren, Cheryl Rigden and Holly Napier, who has now left the club for the USA, being replaced by Ellie Welton, Ann Taylor, Nicola Davidson and Julia Scott.

The away side started off well, with Aimee Godfrey and Nicky Grant both seeing shots go over the bar in the first ten minutes.

A defensive error almost saw Hamilton take the lead after 12 minutes as it allowed Cara McBrearty to fire a shot off, but her effort flew past the post.

Julia Scott had a cheeky backheeled attempt smothered by Megan Cunningham before Nicola Davidson’s long range effort went the wrong side of Cunningham’s goal.

Hamilton’s Cheryl McCulloch set up Carolina Richardson but her attempt was straight at Welton while at the other end of the park Scott had a free kick deflected wide.

The home side had their best chance of the game on the half hour mark, a long ball was misjudged by Ann Taylor and Ashley McDonald rushed in behind the defence but her shot was brilliantly tipped over by Welton.

They did take the lead seconds before half time, a ball in the box pinged out to McCulloch and from the edge of the box she sent the ball into the top corner.

Hamilton doubled their advantage seven minutes into the second half, goalscorer McCulloch swinging a cross into the box, Welton tried to smother it but the ball slipped out her hands and Richardson knocked the ball home.

Richardson went close to scoring again minutes later as she tried to round Welton but the keeper did well to block before she went past.

Davidson and Alana Bruce both went close before another defensive error, this time from Hamilton, let Julia Scott in but her shot went wide of the mark.

Farmington finally grabbed a goal back in the 78th minute, a counter attack culminating in Caroline Heron slotting home.

This seemed to encourage the away side as they started to pressure the home side looking for an equaliser, Heron twice, Nicky Grant and Gemma Collier going close in the space of five minutes before Hamilton tried to slow down play with several substitutions in the final minutes.

Forfar weren’t to be beaten though, deep into injury time a ball into the box evaded everyone but Aimee Godfrey and she stabbed home to the delight of the management and players.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Abbi Grant – solid play

Hamilton Academical: Megan Cunningham 6, Kirstin McGuire 6, Cara McBrearty 7, Ashley McDonald 6, Ainsley Douglas 6, Gillian Sloey 6 (Katie Flannigan 87, 2), Gillian Inglis 6, Corri Cairns 6, Carolina Richardson 7 (Kimberley Black 85, 2), Cheryl McCulloch 7 (Amy Bulloch 87, 2), Deborah McLeod 7 (Angela Lamont 89, 2).

Subs not used: Lynsey Hogg, Claire Campbell.

Forfar Farmington: Ellie Welton 6, Gemma Collier 7, Fay McDonald 6, Aimee Godfrey 7, Julia Scott 6, Nicola Davidson 6, Alana Bruce 7, Caroline Heron 7, Abbi Grant 7, Nicky Grant 6, Ann Taylor 6 (Caren Webster 61, 6).

Brechin City 2 Forfar Athletic 1 (SPFL League One) Glebe Park, 24th August 2013

Brechin City         2       Forfar Athletic     1

Molloy 18                        I Campbell (pen 89)

Trouten 54

Forfar Athletic are still searching for their first league win of the season after a poor performance and a saved last minute penalty saw them lose 2-1 to Angus rivals Brechin City at Glebe Park.

The Loons made four changes from the extra time defeat to Dundee on Tuesday, with Rab Douglas, Stuart Malcolm, Darren Dods and Mark McCulloch making way for Darren Hill, Neil McCabe, Marvin Andrews and Martyn Fotheringham.

The game started off quite even, with both sides going nowhere near the goal in the first fifteen minutes, the closest anyone came was a cross from Paul McLean that Hill gathered with ease.

The home side did take the lead in the 18th minute though, a shot from Andy Jackson was deflected into the air and as everyone else watched, Craig Molloy stepped forward to stab the ball home.

Forfar almost scored an instantaneous equaliser as they ran up the park but ex-Brechin striker Paul McManus nodded over from Gavin Swankie’s cross.

Six minutes later they had another chance when Iain Campbell’s 20 yard free kick evaded everyone in the box bar keeper Graeme Smith who did well to collect.

Brechin were forced into an early sub after Steven Robb looked to have been injured, with their summer signing Ryan Donnelly replacing him.

Another former Brechin player, midfielder Gary Fusco had an effort from the edge of the box flash past the post on the half hour mark before Marvin Andrews headed wide.

Ryan Donnelly almost made it two for the home side but his effort from outside the box was pushed away by Hill before cleared.

Both sides had a chance each before the half ended, McManus firing across goal whilst Andy Jackson had his low shot parried wide by Hill.

Half time: Brechin City 1 Forfar Athletic 0

Gavin Swankie had Forfar’s best opportunity of the game so far two minutes into the second half when a defensive error allowed McManus to thread the ball through to Swankie, whose one-on-one with Smith saw the keeper do well to rush out and block the shot.

Seven minutes later Brechin doubled their lead after a counter attack ended with Bobby Barr squaring for Alan Trouten as Hill came out and Trouten tapped into an empty net.

Less than a minute later another Brechin counter attack ended with a Trouten shot, but this time he put his effort wide of the mark.

A bizarre occurance happened in the 67th minute as Brechin seemed to have run out of spare balls at their bench as they had all been cleared out of the ground and nobody had went to collect them so play was stopped for a minute or two while someone went to get another.

Iain Campbell went close with another free kick after 71 minutes, his set piece being pushed away from underneath the crossbar by the keeper before Omar Kader headed wide from McManus’ cross.

Forfar were awarded a penalty in the 89th minute when Chris Templeman was hauled down by Gerry McLauchlan just inside the area. After much protesting from the home side, Iain Campbell stepped up to net his first penalty of the season. Brechin keeper Graeme Smith was booked in the aftermath of the goal for time wasting.

Deep into injury time the Loons were given a brilliant chance to snatch a point, this time Smith tripped up Gavin Swankie, but was strangely allowed to stay on the park when he should have had a second yellow. Iain Campbell took his second penalty in the space of three minutes but saw this one saved by Smith and the rebound was cleared before the final whistle went.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Darren Hill – kept the Loons in the match with several excellent saves.

Brechin City: Graeme Smith 7, Paul McLean 7, Jonny Brown 6, Graham Hay 7, Gerry McLauchlan 6, Craig Molloy 8, Alan Trouten 7, Stuart Anderson 6, Andy Jackson 8, Bobby Barr 6 (Greg Cameron 75, 5), Steven Robb 4 (Ryan Donnelly 26, 7).

Subs not used: Steven Jackson, Ewan Moyes, Chris Tobin, Allan Walker, Craig Nelson (gk).

Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 8, Mark Baxter 6, Iain Campbell 7, Neil McCabe 5, Marvin Andrews 7, Martyn Fotheringham 6 (Chris Templeman 62, 5), Omar Kader 6 (Ross Campbell 80, 4), Gary Fusco 5, Paul McManus 6, Gavin Swankie 6, Bryan Deasley 5 (Gavin Malin 62, 6).

Subs not used: James Dale, Duncan Reid, Rab Douglas (gk).

Dundee 3 Forfar Athletic 1 (Ramsdens Cup 2nd Round) 20th August 2013

Dundee               3        Forfar Athletic      1

McBride 79                    Malcolm 50

MacDonald  96, 120

Forfar Athletic crashed out of the Ramsdens Cup on Tuesday night after extra time, losing 3-1 to Dundee at Dens Park.

The game was much closer than the scoreline suggests, with Forfar dominating the game at times, and even had the ball in the net six minutes before the end of extra time before Crawford Allan disallowed it for a ‘foul’.

The Loons made eight changes from Saturday’s defeat to Ayr, with Rab Douglas making his debut at his former club. McCulloch, Malcolm, Iain Campbell, Kader, Fusco, Swankie and Deasley were all put into the starting eleven, with Baxter, McManus and Dods the three that stayed in the squad.

A large Loons support made their way to Dens Park and were bizarrely squashed into the corner of the main stand.

The game started off quite evenly possession wise, although Dundee had the first chance of the game, Jim McAlister firing straight at Douglas after 5 minutes.

Kyle Letheren almost gave Forfar the lead after 13 minutes after his poor clearance cannoned off Paul McManus and went round the post.

There were very little chances in the first half, with the Dees Martin Boyle coming closest for either side in the 41st minute, stabbing over from Willie Dyer’s cross.

Half time: Dundee 0 Forfar Athletic 0

The Loons started the second half in brilliant fashion, with Gavin Swankie coming close in the first three minutes . Two minutes later they took the lead after a back post corner from Iain Campbell was bulleted home by Stuart Malcolm.

Four minutes after going behind Dundee almost equalised when Ryan Conroy’s free kick from 20 yards came off the wall and spun past the post.

Sub Peter MacDonald tested Douglas with a smart turn and shot towards his left post which Rab did well to save on the hour mark.

64 minutes into the game Mark McCulloch went down after clearing the ball and stayed down for four minutes without moving, eventually having to get stretchered off and was replaced by Neil McCabe.

Paul McManus wasted an excellent opportunity to put Forfar further ahead in the 77th minutes, a mistake by the home defence in the middle of the park saw McManus race clear into the box but he chose to attempt to cross, which was blocked, rather than cut inside the defender.

Forfar paid for that two minutes later, Kevin McBride’s shot looked like Douglas would gather easily but the wet ball slipped out of his hands and into the goal before he could collect it again.

Both sides had chances to grab a winner in the 90 minutes, with Jamie Reid and MacDonald coming close for Dundee while Iain Campbell and Gavin Swankie saw efforts saved.

End of 90 minutes: Dundee 1 Forfar Athletic 1

In the first half of extra time Iain Campbell saw another free kick tipped over by Letheren whilst Omar Kader’s low effort failed to trouble him.

Six minutes into extra time, Dundee took the lead, Peter MacDonald curling in an excellent free kick from 20 yards past Douglas.

The Loons were unlucky not to equalise in the second period of extra time, Gavin Swankie saw his effort blocked before Darren Dods had a penalty shout waved away, after being hauled down in the box.

Forfar did have the ball in the net in the 113rd minute, Chris Templeman, Stuart Malcolm and Dods causing havoc in the box before it was knocked in, despite Dundee’s efforts to clear. Assistant referree Morag Pirie gave the goal but was overruled by Crawford Allan, who was the only person in the ground to see a foul, Dundee players didn’t seem to be claiming for a foul either.

In the last minute of extra time Dundee added a third, which makes Dundee seems miles better than they were, a breakaway seeing Carlo Monti squaring for Peter MacDonald to slot home.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Has to be Stuart Malcolm, has been a rock at the back since returning, and looks even better than his first spell here, I’m regretting saying he wouldn’t be a worthwhile signing when he arrived.

Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas, Mark Baxter, Mark McCulloch (Neil McCabe 67), Stuart Malcolm, Darren Dods, Iain Campbell, Omar Kader, Gary Fusco, Paul McManus (Chris Templeman 81), Gavin Swankie, Bryan Deasley (Ross Campbell 81).

Subs not used: Marvin Andrews, Darren Hill.

Dundee: Kyle Letheren, Gary Irvine, Willie Dyer, Iain Davidson, Kevin McBride, Gavin Rae (Ryan Conroy 46), Steven Doris (Carlo Monti 62), Declan Gallagher, James McAlister, Jamie Reid, Martin Boyle (Peter MacDonald 46).

Subs not used: Kyle Benedictus, Dan Twardzik.

Bookings: Iain Davidson, Peter MacDonald (Dundee) Stuart Malcolm, Iain Campbell (Forfar Athletic)

Referee: Crawford Allan

Forfar Athletic 3 Airdrieonians 3 (SPFL League One) 10th August 2013

Forfar Athletic    3              Airdrieonians     3

Malin 17                               Lister 32

McManus 53, 54                 McLaren 48

                                             Coult 65

Forfar Athletic started their SPFL League One season with a draw this past Saturday, sharing six goals with Airdrieonians at Station Park.

The Loons were forced to make three changes to the starting line up from last week’s League Cup win over Rangers, with injured pair Stuart Malcolm, Martyn Fotheringham and suspended Mark McCulloch making way for debutant Darren Dods, Bryan Deasley and James Dale.

The game started off quite evenly, with Airdrie getting the first opportunity of the game in the 6th minute, but David Sinclair’s free kick was deflected over by Mark Baxter and the corner came to nothing.

Gavin Malin came close with a 25 yard volley for the Loons with a quarter of an hour gone, but did even better two minutes later, beautiful play saw Malin and James Dale exchange passes before Dale threaded a perfect ball right through the Airdrie defence for Malin to run onto and place the ball past keeper Colin Stewart.

Less than a minute later Omar Kader was unlucky to see his curled effort creep past the post.

Airdrieonians equalised in the 32nd minute, Lewis Coult held the ball up before giving the ball to David Sinclair, Sinclair set Coult up for a cross and his cross was lofted brilliantly for Jim Lister to nod home from ten yards.

Chris Templeman saw his attempt cleared off the line twice 60 seconds after, his header from Bryan Deasley’s free kick knocked off the line before his follow up was again cleared away.

Airdrie had another couple of chances to take the lead before the break, but Willie McLaren’s free kick went just over the bar and Coult saw his header go into Hill’s hands.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 1 Airdrieonians 1

Gavin Swankie was replaced at half time by summer signing Paul McManus.

The Diamonds took the lead three minutes into the second half, Jim Lister setting up McLaren, who slotted home from an angle.

Forfar fought back after conceding the second goal, and in the 53rd minute, were celebrating two goals, first Bryan Deasley ran from his own half with the ball before playing the ball to McManus, who cut in and curled the ball into the top corner, albeit via a slight deflection and then McManus scored an excellent goal to put the Loons in front, Neil McCabe sent a long ball for McManus, who didn’t reach it until it was at the touchline and he rolled the ball underneath the oncoming keeper into the net from an unbelievable angle.

McManus should have had his hat trick three minutes later but fired over. James Dale also saw an effort fly past the post on the hour mark.

Airdrieonians equalised again in the 65th minute after a horrendous mix up in the box, Neil McCabe and Darren Hill both left the ball for each other to clear and it went through both players leaving Lewis Coult the simple task of rolling the ball into an empty net.

A minute later Marvin Andrews saw his header saved by Stewart while Nathan Blockley had an effort go wide for the away side.

Chances were few and far between for the last twenty minutes, Gavin Malin blasting over for the Loons while Jim Lister did the same for Airdrieonians.

FULL TIME: Forfar Athletic 3 Airdrieonians 3

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Gavin Malin

Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 6, Neil McCabe 6, Mark Baxter 6, Marvin Andrews 7, Darren Dods 6, Gavin Malin 7, Omar Kader 7, James Dale 7 (Gary Fusco 75, 4), Chris Templeman 6, Gavin Swankie 6 (Paul McManus 46, 7), Bryan Deasley 6 (Ross Campbell 75, 4).

Subs not used: Duncan Reid, Paul McLellan, Rab Douglas (gk).

Airdrieonians: Colin Stewart 6, Grant Evans 6, Garry Hay (t) 6, Darren McCormack 6, Michael O’Byrne 6, David Sinclair 6, Nathan Blockley 6, Martin Hardie 6 (Jamie Bain 71, 4), Jim Lister 7, Lewis Coult 7 (Liam Coogans 86, 4), Willie McLaren 7.

Subs not used: Liam Watt, Paddy Boyle (t), Andrew Duncan (gk).

Bookings: Darren Dods, Paul McManus (Forfar Athletic) Nathan Blockley, Grant Evans, Michael O’Byrne (Airdrieonians)

Referee: David Somers

Forfar Farmington 8 Kilwinning Ladies 0 (Scottish Women’s Premier League) 11th August 2013

Forfar Farmington 8          Kilwinning Ladies 0

Heron 4, 35, 39, 54

A. Grant 10

Godfrey 16, 63

G. Collier 81

Forfar Farmington put in a dominating display on Sunday as they put eight past Kilwinning Ladies without reply at a sunny Station Park.

Farmington made two changes from last week’s win over Buchan with Gemma Collier and Holly Napier coming in for Caren Webster and Ann Taylor.

The home side started off strongly and had two chances in the first three minutes, Napier heading wide and Caroline Heron firing over, but took the lead in the 4th minute, a through ball letting Heron clean through and she placed the ball past keeper Rachel Halbert.

Gemma Collier headed a corner from Cheryl Rigden wide before Rigden herself saw her 20 yard effort go straight into the keepers hands.

After only ten minutes it was two for Forfar when Abbi Grant received the ball near the corner of the box and sent a beautiful curled attempt into the top corner.

Rigden had a similar effort from the same place in the 12th minute but Halbert pulled off an excellent save to stop it going in.

Aimee Godfrey scored what is probably the easiest goal of her career four minutes later when a defensive mix up left her with the simple task of tapping into an open goal.

Napier, Abbi Grant, Heron and Rigden all went very close again in the space of ten minutes with Grant hitting the bar and Rigden seeing two efforts palmed away by the Kilwinning keeper.

Another defensive error by the away side in the 35th minute saw Heron grab her second of the game and she had her hat-trick four minutes later with a back post header from a Rigden cross.

Kilwinning had their first real effort in the 40th minute with Jennifer Caldwell seeing her 30 yard free kick go just over the Farmington bar.

Nine minutes into the second half Farmington continued their dominance with a corner from Rigden again being nodded in at the back post by Heron, her fourth of the afternoon and 21st of the season.

The away side were unlucky not to score a minute later, Fiona Woods getting through the defence but she failed to take her chance and blasted over.

Godfrey fired straight at the keeper on the hour mark, but made sure she put the ball in the net three minutes later, good play from the team ending in her turning and sending off a shot that beat the keeper to make it 7-0.

Farmington saw efforts from Abbi Grant and sub Julia Scott hit the bar within seconds of each other, Grant after a poor kick out from the keeper, Scott hitting her effort from 35 yards.

Holly Napier, who is leaving the club for America after this game, was unlucky not to score a last goal in Forfar colours in the 72nd minute, with Abbi Grant running almost the entire half with the ball before squaring it for Napier, who saw her effort saved.

Nicola Davidson and Caroline Heron also saw good chances go wide and saved by Halbert, who was doing extremely well to keep the score out of double figures.

With nine minutes left of the match, Gemma Collier made it eight, stabbing home after a corner wasn’t cleared by the defence properly.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Caroline Heron – scored four times and could have had even more.

Forfar Farmington: Leonie Simpson (Ellie Welton 46), Alana Bruce, Fay McDonald, Gemma Collier, Jade McLaren, Aimee Godfrey (Julia Scott 63), Nicky Grant (Nicola Davidson 63), Cheryl Rigden (Cat Gallagher 57), Holly Napier, Caroline Heron, Abbi Grant (Caren Webster 74).

Subs not used: Ann Taylor

Kilwinning Ladies: Rachel Halbert, Leia Swan, Louise Redmond, Helen MacLeod, Nicola Campbell, Lauren Anderson, Danielle Connolly, Chelsea Keane, Jennifer Scollay (Megan McInnes 50), Fiona Woods (Dionne Mair 68), Jennifer Caldwell.

Forfar Athletic 2 Rangers 1 (Scottish League Cup First Round) 3rd August 2013

Forfar Athletic        2        Rangers            1

Swankie 8, 115                    Aird 82



Match Stats

                                       Forfar         Rangers

Shots on target            5                   8

Shots off target            5                   14

Corners                         6                   9

Offsides                         2                   2

Fouls                            18                  16

Bookings                       1                   1

Sending offs                  0                   0

Possession                   47%              53%


Forfar Athletic pulled off the shock of the round and one of the biggest results in their 128 year history on Saturday as they defeated Rangers 2-1 after extra time in the first round of the League Cup.

The Loons made two changes from last week’s win over East Fife with Paul McManus and Bryan Deasley making way for Chris Templeman and Marvin Andrews.

Four thousand plus fans packed into an excited Station Park for the first ever meeting in the first round of this competition against a side with ‘big names’  such as Lee McCulloch, David Templeton, Ian Black and Andy Little.

The game started with Forfar enjoying more possession and even took a shock lead in the 8th minute when a ball played from Martyn Fotheringham over the Rangers defence was misjudged by McCulloch who couldn’t get his head to it, allowing Gavin SWANKIE to race forward and knock the ball over Scott Gallacher into the net, sending the home support into a frenzy.

Three minutes later Rangers almost equalised after a through ball presented Andy Little with an opportunity but his shot was blocked by Darren Hill on the line at the near post. With a quarter of an hour gone Andrew Mitchell had another chance but his low shot was tame and Hill gathered easily.

The Loons almost made it two after 21 minutes, Gavin Swankie’s perfect cross being powerfully headed the wrong side of the post by Chris Templeman.

The Rangers players were claiming for a penalty six minutes later after Stuart Malcolm brought down David Templeton, but ref Calum Murray gave the correct decision of a free kick, as the challenge happened clearly two yards out of the penalty area. McCulloch showed how poor he is at free kicks when he blasted his effort against the wall, the first of many times he did so this afternoon.

Rangers were struggling with the wind the entire first half, bizarrely deciding to play a long ball game, despite Forfar having a tall and strong defensive pair in Stuart Malcolm and Marvin Andrews.

Before the end of the half, the only chance that came for any side was a header from McCulloch, that was smothered easily by Hill.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 1 Rangers 0

At half time, both sides made a sub, with Ross Campbell coming on for Martyn Fotheringham for Forfar, and Rangers’ Fraser Aird replacing Mitchell.

Almost ten minutes into the second half, Hill made an excellent effort to punch away an in swinging corner but was taken out in the process by Lee McCulloch, who looked to have led with an elbow, and McCulloch was booked for his troubles.

Four minutes later Hill pulled off an even better save when Robbie Crawford’s brilliant shot looked to be going in until Hill tipped it wide. From the corner Andy Little comically blasted miles over from 6 yards.

McCulloch finally put a free kick further than the wall in the 68th minute, but this time straight into Hill’s arms.

Ian Black showed how poor he is in this game, choosing to feign injury several times during the course of the game.

David Templeton was denied twice in the space of a minute with ten to go, first having a free kick deflected into Darren Hill’s path and then shooting from the edge of the box into Hill again.

Two minutes later he was unlucky not to equalise after good work from him allowed him space to shoot but his effort went wide of the goal.

Rangers were to be celebrating an equaliser seconds later though when a corner from Templeton was headed against the bar by Andy Little and Fraser AIRD knocked the ball in from close range. The away support shamed themselves with their antics celebrating the goal, throwing smoke bombs on to the pitch, potentially damaging it.

The Loons were up against it after the goal but Mark Baxter almost snatched a winner with minutes left but saw his long range effort fly over the bar.

END OF 90 MINUTES: Forfar Athletic 1 Rangers 1

Dick Campbell replaced the booked Neil McCabe with James Dale before the start of extra time. Two minutes after extra time had begun, Kyle McAusland was unlucky to see his powerful header go past the post, Rangers’ real only chance of the first half as Forfar started to up their game and dominate proceedings. Iain Campbell saw his free kick scrambled away while a corner from Campbell was punched away just as Marvin Andrews was about to get his head to the ball.

The second half of extra time began with another Little chance, this time misjudging the ball’s path and missing it completely. Two minutes later Little saw yet another chance go off target and past the post.

With ten minutes of extra time left Gavin Malin’s lovely volley from the edge of the box went just over the bar as Forfar began to pressure the Glasgow side. A minute later Chris Templeman saw his effort from the same area fly inches past the post.

In the 115th minute Iain Campbell put a long throw into the box, that was cleared twice before coming to Omar Kader, he, James Dale and Mark Baxter exchanged passes, Baxter whipped the ball into the box, it was cleared yet again as Forfar heavily pressured, Gavin Malin collected the ball, turned, lay the ball off to Chris Templeman who confused the defence with the ball at his feet, he ran to the touchline, doubled back, touched the ball back to Iain Campbell who swung in an excellent cross towards Gavin Swankie, Swankie nodded the ball towards the far post. And the Station Park faithful went wild, Forfar Athletic had went 2-1 up against Rangers with just five minutes left of the match and again Gavin Swankie was the hero, his second goal of the match.

Little more was to happen for the last five minutes, and when the final whistle blew, a massive cheer came from the home end and from the Loons players and management. Forfar Athletic have just knocked what was once one of the biggest clubs in Scotland out of the League Cup, quite possibly the most famous result in the history of the club so far. Everyone involved with the Loons this afternoon will almost certainly be classed as legends at the club amongst the fans.

On a personal note, Saturday was one of the best days of my life, I never thought I would ever see Forfar beat Rangers in my life, I still can’t believe it’s happened, I had to pinch myself when the first goal went in, so imagine how I felt when we scored again and when the final whistle went. There’s a picture I have posted on Twitter a few times now (and I’ve hopefully been able to link it into this report, from stoneysnapper on Twitter, his other pictures from the game are on Scotzine‘s flickr page) that I love, it’s of when Swankie scored his second, it shows the sheer elation of Forfar fans while the faces of those who support Rangers yet are in the home end are that of despair.  I don’t think many Rangers fans will be letting slip who they support in the town anytime soon.

Oh, look, it isn’t that hard to do a report that’s actually on the game itself!

Ramblings of a Loon’s Man of the Match: As much as I’d love to give it to all of the team, Gavin Swankie – Was tremendous all game and fully deserved his two goals.

Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 7, Mark Baxter 7, Mark McCulloch 7, Stuart Malcolm 6 (Iain Campbell 33, 7), Marvin Andrews 8, Martyn Fotheringham 6 (Ross Campbell 46, 6), Omar Kader 7, Neil McCabe 7 (James Dale 90, 6), Chris Templeman 8, Gavin Swankie 9, Gavin Malin 8.

Subs not used: Bryan Deasley, Rab Douglas.

Rangers: Scott Gallacher 6, Chris Hegarty 5, Sebastian Faure 4, Robbie Crawford 6, Lee Wallace 4, Lee McCulloch 3, Andy Little 4, Ian Black 3, David Templeton 5 (Barrie McKay 97, 4), Lewis McLeod 5 (Kyle McAusland 73, 4), Andrew Mitchell 5 (Fraser Aird 45, 6).

Subs not used: Luca Gasparotto, Alan Smith.

Bookings: Lee McCulloch, Rangers (53) Neil McCabe, Forfar (78)

Referee: Calum Murray

Attendance: 4,079