Forfar Farmington sauntered to a third consecutive victory in a seven game unbeaten run with a 3-0 win over Buchan at Station Park, in which 14-year old Amy Gallacher grabbed her first senior goal.
Mark Nisbet made two changes from the win over Hutchison Vale two weeks ago, Leonie Simpson and Cheryl Ridgen making way for Ellie Welton and Julia Scott. Buchan threatened early with Leanne Reid and Lydia Johnston seeing efforts go wide of the mark, as well as Forfar’s Caroline Heron striking into the keeper’s arms. Farmington took the lead after 16 minutes, a good cross from Heron to Aimee Godfrey who slotted home, with suspicions of offside, if you listened to the vocal away support. Heron was unlucky to see several efforts go past the Buchan post before the 22nd minute, Caren Webster threading an excellent ball through for Heron to touch past the keeper to double the home side’s advantage. After her goal, Heron looked like she wasn’t going to settle for just one, having more attempts on goal before the half hour mark, all going past the post again. Abbi Grant and Buchan’s Louise Brown were both booked for shoving after Grant took offence to a dangerous Brown tackle, Grant then going on to curl a shot wide before Hannah Stewart blasted over for the away side from the edge of the box.
Farmington continued their attacking straight from the whistle in the second half, Webster and Heron missing efforts in the first two minutes. Stewart had a good turn and shot deflected wide for Buchan after 52 minutes before Reid had a 20 yard free kick pushed wide by Welton. From the resulting corner, the ball was cleared and a counter attack by Forfar ended in Grant hitting the post, whilst seconds later Nicola Davidson had a header saved. Heron had a one on one blocked by the keeper before she did well to push over a header from a Grant cross. In the 71st minute poor defending by the opposition allowed Heron to get another shot off, but it was touched onto the woodwork by keeper Rebecca Flaherty. Two minutes later 17 year old Laura Parsley was brought on for her second appearance of the season. Parsley almost scored minutes after coming on, a good strike looking net bound but for the hand of Flaherty, who knocked it wide. Cheryl Rigden also saw an effort flash across the face of goal before 14 year old Amy Gallacher was brought on for her second appearance for the senior side, replacing goalscorer Aimee Godfrey. Gallacher wasted no time getting on the score sheet, five minutes after coming on, Alana Bruce laid her off and she stroked the ball past the keeper with the confidence of a veteran.
Forfar Farmington: Ellie Welton, Jade McLaren (Gemma Collier 60), Fay McDonald, Aimee Godfrey (Amy Gallacher 84), Julia Scott, Nicola Davidson, Alana Bruce, Caroline Heron, Abbi Grant (Cheryl Rigden 68), Caren Webster (Laura Parsley 73), Nicky Grant.
Subs not used: Ann Taylor, Leonie Simpson (gk).
Buchan Ladies: Rebecca Flaherty, Connie Strachan (Danica Ritchie 60), Hannah Stewart, Linsey Cruden, Lydia Johnston, Zoe Smart, Jennifer Urquhart, Leanne Reid, Michelle Sutherland (Sophie Anderson 60), Gemma Rae, Louise Brown
Forfar Athletic 0 Rangers 1
Forfar Athletic were extremely unlucky not to come away with a draw after outplaying a full strength Rangers side yet still losing 1-0 at Station Park.
The Loons were unchanged from the previous week’s 3-1 win over East Fife, the only change coming from the bench, youngster Connor Gray taking the last week’s unused seventh sub place.
With the game televised nationwide, Forfar started off well, having the first chance of the game after just five minutes, a smart cross from Gavin Swankie was sliced wide by Omar Kader before seven minutes later, Iain Campbell sent a free kick straight into Cameron Bell’s arms.
Rangers were enjoying a fair bit of the ball but weren’t doing much with it, with their first effort on goal not coming until the 23rd minute, although Lee McCulloch’s shot from a corner was blocked then cleared.
Gavin Swankie also saw a shot blocked before in the 41th minute Andy Little caused bother with a cross that evaded everyone but bounced past the post.
Little made up for that two minutes later, a long ball from the Rangers defence wasn’t cleared properly by Darren Dods, his clearance going straight to David Templeton, Templeton lay off Andy Little who knocked the ball past Darren Hill despite pressure from Marvin Andrews to give the Gers an undeserved lead.
Half Time: Forfar Athletic 0 Rangers 1
Forfar came out for the second half much stronger and almost scored within a minute of the half, a run from just inside the Rangers half by Dale Hilson, dancing past defenders before unleashing an excellent long range strike that went inches over the crossbar.
Chris Templeman headed at the keeper before a long ball found Hilson in the 50th minute, he nodded over a defender and then touched the ball over Bell, unfortunately the effort went wide of the goal.
Rangers almost grabbed a second five minutes later, a cross finding Little, who let in Jon Daly, but Darren Hill rushed out to push away his effort.
Iain Campbell saw another free kick gathered by the keeper, whilst his cross after 62 minutes looked dangerous, but Templeman failed to connect with his head.
Rangers came close again with Nicky Law lifting the ball over the bar when he should have netted, Darren Hill went to ground to stop him seconds earlier, Law turned back then shot, but too high. Lee Wallace had an effort go wide from the edge of the box in the 67th minute.
Forfar were close to notching a very well deserved equaliser after 74 minutes, a corner causing havoc in the box before the ball broke to Darren Dods, his goal bound effort deflected by Wallace and then cleared off the line by David Templeton. Iain Campbell also had a shot fly past Bell’s post with fifteen minutes to go.
Five minutes before the end of the game, Bilel Mohsni nodded wide from a Peralta free kick before Sebastian Faure had a feeble effort go nearer the corner flag.
Gavin Malin volleyed over from a Marvin Andrews knock down with a minute to go before Nicky Law shot wide for the away side again.
Andrews had a header knocked over by Rangers sub Faure in added time, while in the very last seconds of the game Cameron Bell did well to block a Gavin Swankie shot from close range.
Despite outplaying the visitors, the Loons couldn’t find a way to grab what would have been a deserved equaliser and stay 8th in the league with a local derby against Arbroath at Gayfield to look forward to next week.
Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Marvin Andrews – never lost a header the whole game
Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 7, Mark Baxter 7, Iain Campbell 7, Marvin Andrews 8, Darren Dods 6, Neil McCabe 6, Omar Kader 6 (Ross Campbell 59, 5), James Dale 7 (Paul McManus 79, 4), Chris Templeman 7 (Gavin Malin 64, 6), Gavin Swankie 8, Dale Hilson 8.
Subs not used: Stuart Malcolm, Gary Fusco, Connor Gray, Rab Douglas (gk).
Rangers: Cameron Bell 6, Richard Foster 6, Steven Smith 5 (Sebastian Faure 79, 4), Bilel Mohsni 6, Lee Wallace 6, Lee McCulloch 6, Andrew Little 7, Arnold Peralta 6, Jon Daly 6, David Templeton 5 (Barrie McKay 83, 3), Nicky Law 5.
Subs not used: Nicky Clark, Robbie Crawford, Emilson Cribari, Dean Shiels, Steve Simonsen (gk).
Hutchison Vale Ladies 2
Forfar Farmington 4
A Grant 16, Heron 27, Rogers (og) 57, Scott 66
Forfar Farmington kept up their unbeaten run on Sunday with a 4-2 over Hutchison Vale at a windswept Saughton Enclosure.
Mark Nisbet made two changes to the win over Falkirk a fortnight ago, Cheryl Rigden and 15 year old Jade McLaren replacing Gemma Collier and Julia Scott.
The opening stages of the game were difficult for either side, any type of ball played into the air was blown towards the touchline where the coaches were situated.
The game’s first proper opportunity came in the 14th minute, a through ball allowed Caroline Heron space but her effort was put wide.
Two minutes later Farmington had taken the lead, a short free kick was played to Abbi Grant who knocked home under pressure from the Vale defence.
Forfar were putting in a better performance than they had in their past two games here, and doubled their lead after 27 minutes, Cheryl Rigden threading another through ball for Heron who slipped the ball past the keeper.
Rigden was unlucky not to get a goal of her own just after the half hour mark, Heron skipping past two defenders before cutting the ball back for Ridgen, whose shot was unlucky to go inches over the bar.
With Hutchison Vale not really getting any chances, one of their defenders took it into their own hands to try and grab an assist, passing straight to Caren Webster in her own box but Webster could only strike the ball straight at the keeper.
Farmington were dealt a blow on the stroke of half time, wide midfielder Abbi Grant, who scored the first, went down after a strong challenge in the middle of the park and had to be replaced at half time by Julia Scott.
HALF TIME: Hutchison Vale 0 Forfar Farmington 2
Vale came out stronger in the second half, forcing a save from Leonie Simpson in the first five minutes of the half, before pulling a goal back in the 55th minute, poor defending allowing their striker to lob Simpson, with help from the wind, from the edge of the box.
The two goal lead was restored just two minutes later, Scott racing down the right flank before attempting to square for Heron, defender Jennifer Rogers getting in the way to block and inadvertently knocking the ball into their own net.
Just after the hour mark Cheryl Rigden was unlucky again, this time stabbing the ball at the keeper and then in the 66th minute Julia Scott ran onto a long ball before lashing home to make it 4-1.
Aimee Godfrey came off in the 66th minute for Amy Gallacher, who was making her SWPL debut at the age of fourteen, Gallacher looked calm and very confident on the ball and can be proud of her performance.
Scott came close yet again with an attempt that flashed across goal and just past the post before another youngster Kayleigh Noble came on for Alana Bruce, Noble making her second appearance of the season, her previous one coming against Vale at home, where she scored minutes after coming on.
Caren Webster hit the post in the 74th minute before the home side’s failed clearance fell to Rigden who couldn’t keep her shot down and blasted over the bar.
Vale pulled a goal back after 76 minutes, another defensive error letting in their attacker who ran clear before slotting past Simpson.
In the last ten minutes of the game, Gallacher, Heron and Ann Taylor all had efforts on goal but couldn’t find the target as they looked to add to the Farmington lead.
Farmington stay 6th and their win ensure they won’t finish any lower than 8th in the table, with 15 points now between them and Hutchison Vale, who occupy eighth.
Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Caroline Heron – grabbed another goal and was again involved in the majority of play
Forfar Farmington: Leonie Simpson 6 (Ellie Welton 79, 4), Jade McLaren 6, Fay McDonald 6, Aimee Godfrey 6 (Amy Gallacher 66, 6), Nicola Davidson 6, Alana Bruce 6 (Kayleigh Noble 72, 5), Caroline Heron 7, Abbi Grant 7 (Julia Scott 46, 7) Caren Webster 6 (Ann Taylor 79, 4), Nicky Grant 6, Cheryl Rigden 7.
Falkirk Ladies 1 Forfar Farmington 3
Sutherland 48 Heron 11, 86
Forfar Farmington stretched their unbeaten run to five games with a scrappy 3-1 win over lowly Falkirk Ladies at Recreation Park.
Manager Mark Nisbet made two changes from last week’s 2-2 draw with Hamilton Accies, with Ellie Welton and Ann Taylor making way for Leonie Simpson and Caren Webster.
The side started strongly, Caroline Heron firing wide at the back post from a Julia Scott corner before seeing another attempt cleared just before the goalline by a defender in the first four minutes.
Falkirk were unlucky not to capitalise on poor defending in the 5th minute when their striker raced clear but failed to get a shot in as Simpson raced out to clear. A minute later she did well again to get down to save a shot from a corner.
Heron gave the away side the lead in the 11th minute with an excellent goal, a high ball came towards the Falkirk box, she outmuscled a defender, headed the ball with her back to goal, turned and hit a volley from just outside the area that went into the top corner.
Scott went close with a free kick minutes later before in the 24th minute a good through ball from Heron allowed her to get a shot away but she could only put it wide.
Forfar did have the ball in the net again in the 2th minute but the ref pulled the play back for an earlier offside. Heron saw another shot go straight at the keeper seconds later as Forfar started to dictate play.
The home side grabbed an equaliser three minutes after half time, a free kick 20 yards out from Lisa Sutherland deceived keeper Leonie Simpson due to the wind and Simpson couldn’t reach the ball as it went in the top corner.
Caroline Heron had chances to put Farmington ahead again in the 51st minute, her shot from the edge of the box being parried wide before she nodded wide from Julia Scott’s corner. Scott then missed a good opportunity from a Heron cross.
Heron then blasted over in the 58th minute before six minutes later she, Fay McDonald and Caren Webster all had shots blocked in quick succession as Falkirk frantically tried to clear their lines.
Cheryl Rigden came on for Webster in the 66th minute and made a difference in the middle of the park as two minute later the away side took the lead again, a ball from midfield caused havoc in the box when the keeper failed to hold it, Abbi Grant couldn’t get a shot away but the ball broke to Aimee Godfrey who had the simple task of slotting into an empty net from close range.
Rigden had a good turn and shot a minute later before Falkirk had a rare venture out of their own half, their number 10 going close with a 20 yard effort flying inches past Simpson’s post.
Forfar made sure of the game with four minutes left after excellent vision from Godfrey, a through ball split the Falkirk defence and Heron collected it before drilling through the keeper’s legs.
The two goals today from Heron further cements her place as top scorer in the entire SWPL, with 24 goals in all competitions, whilst the club’s next game is away to Hutchison Vale on the 15th later this month.
This result leaves the club still two points ahead of 8th placed Hamilton Academical, but with enough points to be in third place had they been in the top half of the table.
Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Caroline Heron – scored two goals and was involved in every attack
Forfar Farmington: Leonie Simpson 6, Gemma Collier 6, Fay McDonald 7, Aimee Godfrey 7, Julia Scott 6, Nicola Davidson 6, Alana Bruce 6, Caroline Heron 8, Abbi Grant 6, Caren Webster 6 (Cheryl Rigden 66, 7), Nicky Grant 6.
Forfar Athletic 1 Stenhousemuir 2
I Campbell 58 (pen) Higgins 29
D Smith 30
Forfar Athletic are now second bottom in the SPFL League One table after being defeated 2-1 by Stenhousemuir at a very windy Station Park.
The Loons made three changes from the midweek defeat in the League Cup to Dundee with Neil McCabe, Martyn Fotheringham and Ross Campbell coming in for Gavin Malin, Gary Fusco and Omar Kader.
Stenhousemuir started off the stronger side, with target man John Gemmell having three efforts go close in the first ten minutes whilst David Rowson also saw a shot go wide of the mark in the 13th minute.
After further efforts from Eddie Malone and Gemmell it took until the 26th minute for Forfar to have any sort of effort, Gavin Swankie doing well to out run Ross McMillan from the halfway line before firing off a shot but his attempt was straight at Chris Smith.
The visitors took the lead in the 29th minute after a ball in the box wasn’t cleared properly and Sean Higgins lashed home from close range.
They doubled their advantage less than a minute later, similar circumstances saw Darren Smith have a shot blocked by a defender but their hesitancy to clear allowed him to have a second go and he made no mistake this time.
Half time: Forfar Athletic 0 Stenhousemuir 2
The Loons seemed to play better after the break with the wind behind them, four minutes into the half Dale Hilson cracked off a long rage shot that crashed off the crossbar before in the 58th minute they were awarded a fourth penalty in the space of a week, Sean Dickson fouling sub James Dale. Iain Campbell stepped up and fired home to fire up the home side.
Within the space of five minutes after pulling a goal back, Forfar had several chances through Omar Kader, Gavin Malin and Swankie twice, his best one coming from a poor backpass by Malone allowing him in on goal but he couldn’t put the ball past the keeper.
Darren Dods almost notched his first goal for the club in the 67th minute, a corner into the box wasn’t dispossessed properly, Dale Hilson swung it back in and Templeman nodded the ball back to Dods’s header was well held by Chris Smith.
Swankie went close yet again in the 74th minute with a 6 yard effort but Smith yet again pulled off a decent save and as the ball was pinged back in Smith parried Templeman’s shot too.
John Gemmell almost put Stenny 3-1 up with ten minutes to go with a smart header but he placed it too high and it went over.
Mark Baxter was unlucky not to see his low shot from a tight angle creep in at the near post, Smith pushing out for a corner that came to nothing.
Forfar’s final chance for an equaliser came in the dying moments of the game, a long ball was et by a good touch by Swankie but his second wasn’t as good as his shot fizzed across the face of goal and past the post.
Full time: Forfar Athletic 1 Stenhousemuir 2
Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Dale Hilson – played well and hit the crossbar
Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 6, Mark Baxter 6, Iain Campbell 6, Stuart Malcolm 6, Darren Dods 6, Martyn Fotheringham 5 (Gavin Malin 56, 6), Dale Hilson 7, Ross Campbell 5 (James Dale 56, 5), Chris Templeman 6, Gavin Swankie 6, Neil McCabe 5 (Omar Kader 56, 5).
Subs not used: Gary Fusco, Duncan Reid, Marvin Andrews, Rab Douglas.
Stenhousemuir: Chris Smith 7, Eddie Malone 6, Kevin McKinlay 6, Ross Smith 6, Ross McMillan 7, Brown Ferguson 6, Sean Dickson 6, David Rowson 6, John Gemmell 7, Sean Higgins 7 (Ross McNeil 90, 1), Darren Smith 7 (Sean Lynch 88, 1).
Subs not used: Craig Anderson, Ross Brash, Nicky Devlin, Errol Douglas, Dean Shaw.