Forfar Farmington 1 Hamilton Academical 2 (SWPL) 27th July 2014

Forfar Farmington         1

Nicky Grant 82

Hamilton Academical   2

Carolina Richardson 63, 84

Forfar Farmington can be happy with their performance despite the result as they lost 2-1 to Hamilton Academical at Station Park on Sunday as the SWPL restarted.

Paul White fielded the same side that hammered Buchan 4-0 in the last game before the split and looked to avenge the 7-1 defeat to the Accies earlier in the season. The game was Keira Johnstone’s first competitive appearance since dislocating her knee against the same side back in March.

Inside the first minute Nicky Grant almost scored but Megan Cunningham saved her effort well. Grant had another chance three minutes later after Amy Gallacher collected a long ball, cut the ball back for her but she fired over.

She lashed the ball wide in the 6th minute after Gallacher set her up again with a through ball. Gallacher had an opportunity of her own after 14 minutes, Laura Parsley swinging a cross in, Lindsey Dunbar knocking the ball down for Gallacher to shoot just over.

The play was then mainly contained to the middle of the field as Forfar looked to press forward again and Hamilton struggled to get into the game.

In the 38th minute Cunningham almost gifted Forfar a goal, a ball from the Farmington defence was chased by Gallacher and as she advanced on the ball Cunningham attempted to clear the ball but only managed to swipe at thin air, allowing Gallacher past for the ball, defender Gillian Inglis saving her blushes by harrying the ball out of play under pressure from the young striker.

Parsley did well to beat two defenders on the right in the 40th minute, cutting in before sending her shot straight at Cunningham. Hamilton had their first shot of the game a minute later, Rachel Halliday’s corner falling to Terri Donnelly but her shot was blocked before being cleared.

HALF TIME: Forfar Farmington 0 Hamilton Academical 0

Hamilton came out for the second half a better side than they were in the first, with Forfar unlucky not be leading already. Halliday fired over for the visitors in the 47th minute before a counter attack saw Gallacher clear of the Accies defence but she could only shoot straight at Cunningham.

Striker Carolina Richardson, who had looked impressive so far came the closest either side had to scoring after 57 minutes, latching onto a long ball but when she let fly with her shot it cannoned off the post before being cleared.

Richardson opened the scoring just after the hour mark, another long ball from Deborah McLeod forward looked to be safely gathered by Fiona McNicoll but somehow slipped underneath her, allowing the striker to knock the ball into an empty net.

Five minutes later Farmington were dealt a blow when Jade McLaren was stretchered off after a challenge with Richardson.

The game slowed down after this and eventually livened up again in the 82nd minute, Nicola Davidson floating a free kick into the box for Nicky Grant to volley home the equaliser and her fifth goal in three competitive games, the very least Forfar deserved.

Hamilton stole all three points two minutes later though, Richardson scoring her second after Halliday’s corner fell to her, rifling home through a pack of players.

Despite Forfar piling on pressure in the final minutes they couldn’t find an equaliser and were disappointed when the final whistle went.

The side now take on Queen’s Park in Glasgow on August 10th and will look to take all three points as they attempt to climb the table.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Nicky Grant

Forfar Farmington: Fiona McNicoll 6, Lindsey Dunbar 7, Holly Napier 6 (Keira Johnstone 59, 6), Murron White 6, Jade McLaren 6 (Alex Russell 72, 4), Kayleigh Brough 6 (Sydney Cairns 63, 5), Laura Parsley 6, Nicky Grant 7, Amy Gallacher 6, Nicola Davidson 6, Alana Bruce 6.

Subs not used: Ellice Brannan, Kayleigh Noble.

Hamilton Academical: Megan Cunningham, Kirstin McGuire, Terri Donnelly, Rachel Halliday, Lynsey Hogg, Gillian Inglis, Sarah Laverty, Kathleen Toolan (Courtney Keary 77), Shelby Kearney, Deborah McLeod, Carolina Richardson.

Subs not used: Jennifer McDonald, Elaine Fleming (gk).


East Fife 2 Forfar Athletic 1 (Petrofac Training Cup) 26th July 2014

East Fife             2

Jon McShane 14, Ewan Moyes 42

Forfar Athletic   1

Dale Hilson 72

Forfar Athletic were defeated in their first competitive game of the season as they crashed out of the Petrofac Training Cup in the first round, losing 2-1 to East Fife in Methil.

They made just one change from last week’s 3-3 draw in a friendly at Arbroath, James Dale making way for Stephen Husband. Husband, Andrew Steeves, Derek Young all made their competitive debuts for the club, along with Dale Hilson and Danny Denholm.

The home side started off the better side, Ewan Moyes heading at Douglas before Jamie Beaton had a shot deflected into his arms in the early stages.

They took the lead in the 14th minute, Caolan McAleer beating Mark Baxter to the touchline, swinging in a cross that Jon McShane headed home at the back post.

East Fife went close to doubling the advantage after 20 minutes, Allan Walker blasting over from long range.

McAleer was unlucky not to score himself on the half hour mark, curling a great effort from the corner of the box, Douglas making a very good save to stop it.

Forfar looked lacklustre compared to their pre-season performances, their first chance not coming until the 39th minute, Michael Dunlop blasting over the bar after an Omar Kader corner.

The Methil side extended their lead three minutes before half time, a free kick into the box was headed across goal by Kevin Smith and Moyes was on hand to nod home from almost on the line.

HALF TIME: East Fife 2 Forfar Athletic 0

Gavin Swankie fired a free kick wide and Hilson could only shoot straight at the keeper in the second half as the Loons looked to get back into the game.

In the 58th minute Husband had a free kick deflected wide before the corner came to nothing. Five minutes later Hilson’s cross was met by Husband but he sliced his effort back across goal before it was cleared.

Forfar made their final two subs in the 64th minute and from then started to pressure the Fifers more and more. The pay off came in the 72nd minute when they pulled a goal back, Michael Dunlop’s long ball finding Hilson, the striker beating a defender before beating Fleming with his shot.

Sub Chris Templeman headed over four minutes later from a Steeves cross before Scott Smith failed to threaten Douglas at the other end.

In the final few minutes the Loons pushed for a goal to take the game to extra time, Hilson having a great run to keep the ball in before cutting the ball back for James Dale but his shot hit the sidenetting before Denholm headed wide in the last shot of the game.

East Fife: Allan Fleming, Fraser Mullen, Scott Smith, Stevie Campbell, Ewan Moyes, Allan Walker, Caolan McAleer (Lewis Barr 75), Jamie Beaton (Ross Brown 64), Jon McShane (Nathan Austin 81), Kevin Smith, Alan Cook.

Subs not used: Gary Naysmith, David Maskrey, Ross Campbell, Dylan Rooney (gk)

Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas, Mark Baxter (Aaron James 46), Andrew Steeves, Michael Dunlop, Stuart Malcolm, Derek Young, Omar Kader (Chris Templeman 64), Stephen Husband (James Dale 64), Dale Hilson, Gavin Swankie, Danny Denholm.

Subs not used: Craig Smith, Liam Keiller, Paul McLellan, Ross Salmon (gk)

Interview with Forfar Farmington’s Damon Neish

Along with Logan McConachie, Forfar Farmington appointed Damon Neish to their coaching staff recently and the Dundonian thinks that the side don’t train or play like a team that is struggling this season and believes there is no doubt the side will avoid relegation.

The 29 year old joins the side from Scottish Premiership club Dundee after coaching youth teams there, most recently the under 14’s. He started his coaching career at the age of 16 when he spent time at a summer camp in America and decided coaching is what he wanted to do. After playing for Abertay University he then coached the side, something he described as ‘a great coaching experience’ before moving to America for a year in 2011. On his time there he said ‘It was a very similar set up and family friendly feel as I have found Forfar to be in the short time I’ve been here. It was also my first chance to work in the women’s game. I was lucky, where I was, I got to work with some unbelievable coaches who taught me the difference between playing the game, and coaching the game, I can’t state enough how important a time that was for me and how grateful I am for the people I worked with in America. I really enjoyed my time there, but decided that I wanted to come back home to work towards my coaching licenses.’


On Damon’s return to Scotland he began work with the SFA’s community programme and with Dundee. He is now heavily involved with club development in the region, as well as doing some work with the regional boys and girls squads and at the performance school with Iain Jenkins.


He joined Farmington a fortnight ago and said about the move ‘It came about at the very beginning of the summer. I was still with Dundee, but there was a lot of confusion at the club about what was happening going forward, there was a lot of gossip and chat but nothing official. I decided to just speak to some people about what else was out there, spoke to a couple of other pro youth set ups, but I wanted away from it. I emailed Forfar Farmington about coaching, and they got back to me quickly. We exchanged emails and from the professional manner in which they conducted themselves, I knew I wanted to be involved. We arranged a meet, I came up, met Paul, Logan, Charlie and everyone else, we had a discussion about the club, the direction Forfar wanted to go and how to get there, what they expected of me and what I expected from them, and  at the end of the meeting I agreed to come aboard.’


Neish, like Logan McConachie, has been extremely impressed with the club and the set up thus far, adding ‘As I said before, the professional manner in which Forfar quickly got me on board left me no doubt about my decision. I needed not only an ambitious club to match with me, but a club that went about achieving those ambitions in the right way. I love how Paul is giving youth a chance, I know it was a tough start to the season for the girls, but they are a talented group, the young players are fantastic and the more experienced players have the perfect attitude and skill set to guide the club forward and up the league.’


When asked about whether the side could stay up, he was in no doubt as to what his opinion on that was ‘Forfar will stay in this league. Like I said, it’s obviously been a tough start to the year, but even in training, this isn’t a team that trains or plays like a team struggling, this team has shown me they believe in themselves and trust one another. Nothing is going to be easy, but we have the talent and attitude to come out of this season strong.’


Forfar Farmington 8 Motherwell 1 (Friendly) 20th July 2014

Forfar Farmington   8

Parsley 6, 7, 77, Davidson 34, Gallacher 36, 79, Napier 59, White 87

Motherwell                 1

Liddell 32

Forfar Farmington began preparations for the second half of the SWPL season with a home friendly against 2nd Division West side Motherwell, beating them by eight goals to the visitors’ one on an extremely hot Sunday.

The game was a good workout for the players, with wide midfielder Keira Johnstone getting some game time under her belt coming back from the dislocated knee she suffered back in March.

They almost scored after ten seconds, racing up the park without Motherwell touching the ball, but Holly Napier fired wide.

Napier shot wide two minutes later from an Alana Bruce cross before Laura Parsley sent her effort straight at the keeper.

Parsley gave the home side the lead in the sixth minute, collecting a great ball from Jade McLaren, beating the defence before lobbing Danielle McNamara.

Only a minute later it was 2-0, Amy Gallacher and Parsley playing a one-two before Parsley’s cross into the box deceived McNamara and went in via the underside of the crossbar.

Natasha Roberts went close for Motherwell as they looked to get back into the game, with Gallacher lashing wide at the other end.

In the 12th minute Pamela Liddell outmuscled McLaren but saw her shot saved, with Adele Tinney missing the follow up effort.

Nicky Grant could only fire at McNamara while Gallacher did the same minutes later. In the 23rd minute the visitors’ Cheryl Watt forced Fiona McNicoll into a good save.

Just after the half hour mark, Motherwell reduced the deficit, Liddell capitalising on an error to fire past McNicoll.

The two goal lead was restored two minutes later, Nicola Davidson and Grant exchanging passes before Davidson curled the ball into the top corner from the corner of the box.

Gallacher made it four in the 36th minute, Ellice Brannan giving the ball back to McNicoll, who went on a small run to the middle of her half, sending a ball up the park, the defence looked to be dealing with but it cannoned off one of them, allowing Gallacher to race clear, round McNamara and roll the ball home.

HALF TIME: Forfar Farmington 4 Motherwell 1

The first fifteen minutes of the second half were quiet, with the play mainly restricted to midfield, the first proper chance coming in the 59th minute, it was actually a goal, another for Farmington, Napier pouncing on another defensive mishap to score her fourth goal in three games.

Cheryl Kilcoyne forced a great stop from McNamara two minutes later, at the other end Liddell again having a chance but her shot flashed over the bar.

Kilcoyne had two chances in the space of a couple of minutes go wide of the mark before Keira Johnstone’s great run allowed her to send in a low cross that was swept over by Nicky Grant.

In the 76th minute Grant swung in a cross for Gallacher and as she readied herself to fire home the ball was nipped off her toes by an alert defender.

Gallacher was involved in another attack a minute later, collecting a long ball and as she advanced on McNamara she tried to round her, the keeper blocking her attempt to although the ball rolled out to Laura Parsley, who chipped the ball over the keeper and into the empty net.

Less than sixty seconds later Gallacher had her second, Grant beating players on the right wing, passing the ball to the unmarked striker, and she slotted home.

Lindsey Dunbar, Parsley and Napier all had chances to score in the final ten minutes before Murron White powered a header home from a Davidson corner three minutes from full time.

The side should take confidence from the victory, having now scored a massive twenty one goals in three games, conceding just three.

They now visit Jeanfield Girls on Thursday as more warm up for Sunday when they entertain Hamilton Academical in the first game of the second half of the season.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Laura Parsley, great hat trick.

Forfar Farmington: Fiona McNicoll 6, Holly Napier 7, Megan Burns 6, Murron White 7, Jade McLaren 6, Lindsey Dunbar 6, Laura Parsley 8, Nicky Grant 8, Amy Gallacher 8, Nicola Davidson 8, Alana Bruce 7.

Rolling substitutes: Sydney Cairns 6, Erin Cattanach 6, Ellice Brannan 6, Cheryl Kilcoyne 6, Kayleigh Noble 7, Keira Johnstone 7.

Motherwell: Danielle McNamara 6, Eilidh Barbour 6, Natasha Roberts 6, Ainsley Douglas 6, Nicole Goodwin 7, Adele Tinney 6, Demi McCulloch 6, Caylea Fraser 6, Erin Dickson 6, Karen Wright 6, Pamela Liddell 7.

Rolling substitutes: Kirsty Kirkland 6, Jane O’Toole 6, Amy Bulloch 6, Cheryl Watt 7.

Arbroath 3 Forfar Athletic 3 (Pre-Season Friendly) 19th July 2014

Arbroath            3

Linn 33, 40, McManus 48

Forfar Athletic   3

Hilson 21, Kader 41, Templeman 89

Six goals saw Forfar Athletic finish their pre-season unbeaten when they drew 3-3 with Angus rivals Arbroath at a dull and misty Gayfield on Saturday.

There were three changes from Wednesday’s draw with Dundee United, James Dale, Derek Young and Stuart Malcolm coming in for Chris Templeman, Gavin Malin and Darren Dods. Trialist Andrew Steeves continued at left back, with Aaron James on the bench. There was a new trialist on the bench for the Loons, ex-Dunfermline midfielder Stephen Husband.

The Loons almost scored inside sixty seconds, ex-Arbroath striker Gavin Swankie’s cross evading everyone, Danny Denholm swung the ball back in and it fell to Dale Hilson but he fired over.

Hilson and Swankie both had chances fly over before they opened the scoring in the 21st minute, Denholm sending Hilson clear with a great through ball, Hilson cooly slotting home under Scott Morrison.

Swankie shot wide in the 24th minute before Arbroath finally had their first effort on goal in the 32nd minute, ex-Forfar forward Paul McManus fluffing his chance when one on one with Rab Douglas.

They equalised a minute later, Linn latching onto another through ball before firing home.

Omar Kader hit the side netting with ten minutes of the half remaining minutes before Derek Young setting up Swankie, who cut inside Arbroath’s trialist defender, curling wide from a good angle.

Arbroath took the lead in the 40th minute, Linn’s shot taking a deflection and deceiving Douglas for his second in seven minutes.

The Loons didn’t have to wait long for an equaliser, within sixty seconds Swankie’s cross was headed across goal by Young and Kader lashed the ball home to even the game up.

HALF TIME: Arbroath 2 Forfar Athletic 2

Four changes were made at half time, Ross Salmon, Stephen Husband, Aaron James and Darren Dods coming on for Douglas, Stuart Malcolm, James Dale and Mark Baxter.

The Red Lichties took the lead for the second time three minutes into the 2nd half, Bobby Linn racing down the right wing before whipping a ball in for McManus to power a header home.

Michael Dunlop, Kader, Hilson and Young all had efforts wide or blocked in quick succession as the Loons attempted to get back on level terms.

Scott McBride almost deceived Salmon in the 59th minute, his shot from long range swerving everywhere as it went towards goal but the young keeper did well to push it away.

Linn hit the post in the 69th minute before six minutes later Templeman laid the ball off for Husband and his shot was fumbled by Morrison, the ball spinning inches past the post. From Husband’s corner Templeman saw his header kneed off the line by a defender.

Sub Craig Smith had a volley deflected past the post with thirteen minutes of the game left before Swankie had yet another shot blocked.

In the 79th minute Arbroath sub Chris Scott saw his effort saved and the Loons started a counter attack from that, ending in Hilson’s low cut back finding Smith but his shot was saved.

Husband had a shot from the edge of the box swerve wide before Simon Murray nodded over at the other end from a Scott cross.

With a minute to go the Loons grabbed a deserved equaliser, Craig Smith done well to beat Johnny Lindsay before cutting the ball in for Chris Templeman to somehow flick home past Morrison and a defender, the ball taking forever to roll across the line.

The Red Lichties almost scored a winner deep into injury time, Scott’s cross coming off Mark Whatley but Salmon collected the ball before anything happened.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Derek Young

Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas 6 (Ross Salmon 46, 6), Mark Baxter 6 (Darren Dods 46, 6), Andrew Steeves (t) 7 (Aaron James (t) 46, 6), Michael Dunlop 6, Stuart Malcolm 6, James Dale 6 (Stephen Husband (t) 46, 6), Omar Kader 7 (Chris Templeman 63, 6), Derek Young 7 (Liam Keiller 63, 5), Dale Hilson 7 (Paul McLellan 83, 3), Gavin Swankie 6, Danny Denholm 6 (Craig Smith 65, 5).

Arbroath: Scott Morrison, Michael Travis (Andrew Black (t) 68), Johnny Lindsay (Craig Johnstone 90), Ross Fisher (t), Ricky Little, Kevin Nicoll, Bobby Linn (Chris Scott 76), Kieran Stewart (t) (Mark Whatley 83), Paul McManus (Simon Murray 61), Kevin Buchan (t) (Jack Smith (t) 61), Scott McBride.

Subs not used: Connor Birse, Kieran McWalter.

Interview with Forfar Farmington’s Logan McConachie

Scottish Women’s Premier League side Forfar Farmington recently appointed Logan McConachie as part of the coaching team and the Perthshire based 22 year old believes that the characters in the side will be key to getting more points on the table in the second half of the season, which starts next Sunday at home to Hamilton Academical.

McConachie is already quite experienced, with ten years under his belt, starting with his local primary school before starting up his own youth side in Bankfoot at the age of 16, the side going a massive nine months unbeaten last season as well as having two players sign pro-youth with St Johnstone and Cowdenbeath. He also went 14 games unbeaten as first team coach of the Dundee University Mens side, winning the Scottish Cup and working for the Scottish FA too with the regional performance programme and as the Club Inclusive Development Officer for Tayside, Fife and Angus.

About the move to Paul White’s side at Station Park along with fellow new coach Damon Neish, Logan said ‘It happened about 3 weeks ago, I was on a ‘football free holiday’ in Murcia, Spain with my girlfriend Carleen. That, however, was about to change, as I had a message from Paul White on my phone asking if i could call him. The coach I worked with at the East Regional Squad u14s – Nicky Murray – had explained to Paul that I would be a good candidate for the vacant position. Paul offered me the position on the phone and although I wanted to accept straight away I thought it would be best to discuss it with my nearest and dearest first, the decision was unanimous and I called Paul back the next day with my answer.’

He took his first training session last Tuesday and so far he’s been impressed with the club as a whole along with the Premier League side, adding ‘The facilities that the SWPL have access to are second to none. I’ve also heard and witnessed for myself the great things about the club, as well as their fantastic youth programme that has created some excellent players in the past and will do in the future. It’s a credit to the coaching staff and volunteers at this club.’

‘I absolutely believe the side is good enough to stay up. As you’ve already seen my teams don’t often lose and the characters we have in this team will be key to getting points on the table. I have to say it’s a huge credit to the younger players in the team who have taken a step up to the premier league, their technical ability, energy and enthusiasm for the game will without a doubt play a huge part in our team’s performances.

‘Everyone at FF have been great towards me and I’ve received many kind messages from people in the region and on record I’d like to thank them for their support and I promise to take the team from strength to strength.’

The side return to Premier League action on next Sunday, when they welcome Hamilton Academical to Station Park, where they will look to avenge the defeat suffered earlier in the season, kick-off is at 2pm.

Forfar Athletic 2 Dundee United 2 (Pre-Season Friendly) 16th July 2014

Forfar Athletic   2

Dale Hilson 50 (pen), 54

Dundee United   2

Andrew Robertson 29, Jordan Moore 88

A late equaliser denied Forfar Athletic victory over a talented Dundee United side that included 3 regular first team players at Station Park as they drew 2-2 on Wednesday night.

Five changes were made from Monday’s win over Cove Rangers, the trialist centre back and the trialist who scored, Craig Smith, Paul McLellan and Liam Keiller all dropped out of the starting eleven for Mark Baxter, Gavin Malin, Dale Hilson, Gavin Swankie and Danny Denholm. United fielded six players with senior level experience, the main ones being first team regulars Radoslaw Cierzniak, John Souttar and Scottish internationalist Andrew Robertson.

In front of a near two thousand strong crowd, the first opportunity of the game in the sixth minute and was wasted by United’s ‘trialist’ Kudus Oyenuga at the far post when it was much easier to score than to fire over.

In the 13th minute ex-Arab Dale Hilson, who was released by them in the summer, turned Darren Petrie inside out on the touchline before sending in a cross that was pushed towards Swankie, his shot was blocked before the ball was taken off Gavin Malin’s toes as he went to fire home.

Petrie then nodded over from a Charlie Telfer corner before Oyenuga missed yet another sitter after 19 minutes.

Hilson caused havoc on the right wing again in the 23rd minute, this time beating Robertson but his cross was cleared before anyone in a Forfar shirt could reach it.

Yet again Hilson was involved in an attack, this time beating four or five defenders with ease as he drove forward before letting fly with a shot from the edge of the box that went just wide of the mark.

The visitors took the lead in the 29th minute, Andrew Robertson ran into the Forfar half, passing to Aidan Connolly, who switched the ball into the box for Robertson to latch onto before slotting home underneath Rab Douglas.

The Loons reacted to going behind well, with Chris Templeman having a shot blocked before four minutes from half time, Danny Denholm knocked the ball towards the left back trialist who sent in a great cross, although the knocked was nodded away, but only to Hilson who fired wide.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 0 Dundee United 1

Five minutes into the second half Forfar were awarded a penalty when Scott Fraser bundled over Omar Kader in the box. Dale Hilson stepped up and coolly slotted the penalty home.

Darren Dods made a great challenge in the 52nd minute to stop Oyenuga closing in on goal when he looked to be clean through.

Forfar took the lead in the 54th minute, John Souttar misjudging where to place a header back towards goal and Hilson rushed past Darren Petrie before composing himself when one on one with Cierzniak, his first attempt was parried and when he received the ball back, he cut past a defender before firing home his second in four minutes.

It was no more than Hilson deserved for his performance against his former employers.

Oyenuga missed his third sitter of the game in the 58th minute, while at the other end on the hour mark Darren Dods was close to bulleting home had Cierzniak not punched Omar Kader’s corner away just before he got his head to it.

Scott Fraser volleyed wide and Blair Spittal curled a free kick past the post as United looked for an equaliser with the Loons looking as if they were starting to tire.

With seven minutes left of the game Fraser went close again but his effort was deflected wide before sub Michael Gardyne’s corner came to nothing.

Michael Dunlop cleared Spittal’s cross off sub Jordan Moore’s toes in the 85th minute, with the resultant corner by Gardyne falling to sub Ali Coote, his shot being deflected into Moore’s path but he wasted the chance he had. From this a counter attack formed and ended in the left back Trialist swinging in a cross that was headed away with Denholm waiting to pounce at the back post.

The Tannadice outfit grabbed an equaliser with two minutes left, a low cross from Robertson being lashed home by Moore.

The final chance of the game came from Forfar, Denholm winning the ball in midfield before sending Craig Smith clear down the right wing, he put a cross in that was swept over the bar by Gavin Swankie.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Dale Hilson, no chance it could have been anyone else. Deserved his two goals.

Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas 6, Mark Baxter 6 (Trialist 71, 4), Trialist 7, Michael Dunlop 7, Darren Dods 7, Gavin Malin 4 (Darren Young 15, 6), Omar Kader 6 (Craig Smith 71, 4), Dale Hilson 8 (Paul McLellan 71, 4), Chris Templeman 6, Gavin Swankie 6, Danny Denholm 7.

Subs not used: Stuart Malcolm, Ross Salmon (gk)

Dundee United: Radoslaw Cierzniak, Euan Spark (Jamie Montgomery 61), Andrew Robertson, John Souttar, Darren Petrie, Scott Smith, Blair Spittal, Charlie Telfer (Michael Gardyne 46), Kudus Oyenuga (Jordan Moore 61), Scott Fraser, Aiden Connolly (Ali Coote 61).

Sub not used: Marc McCallum (gk)

Forfar Athletic 3 Cove Rangers 0 (Pre-Season Friendly) 14th July 2014

Forfar Athletic     3

Paul McLellan 11, Kieran Stewart 49, Danny Denholm 79

Cove Rangers       0


A mixture of experience, youth and trialists helped Forfar Athletic keep their unbeaten run in pre-season with a 3-0 win over Highland League outfit Cove Rangers.

There were seven changes from last Thursday’s draw with Livingston, Douglas, Keiller, Smith, Templeman, McLellan and trialists Kieran Stewart and Andrew Steeves replacing Salmon, Malin, Dale, Malcolm, Swankie, Hilson and Denholm.

Cove fielded a familiar name or two in the form of ex-Loons keeper Sandy Wood and former Aberdeen player Chris Clark. They had the first chance of the game in the opening minute, John Smith seeing his long range effort tipped over by Rab Douglas.

Youngster Paul McLellan had excellent vision to swing a ball from the middle of the park to the left wing for Omar Kader to run on to, Kader reaching the touchling before cutting the ball back for Craig Smith but he could only send his volley wide. A minute later Jamie McAllister knocked the ball wide from a Danny Park cross.

The Loons took the lead after eleven minutes, Kader sent a great through ball for McLellan to run onto before slotting home inside the box past Wood.

They had a chance to extend the lead eight minutes later, Kader sending Smith clear this time and as Smith advanced on goal, he tried to round Wood but was taken out by the keeper and referee Steven Traynor awarded a penalty. Chris Templeman stepped up but his shot was pushed away by the keeper.

McLellan went close to grabbing his second of the game in the 26th minute, stepping up to fire a 25 yard free kick over. Smith also fired wide as the youngsters looked to give Dick Campbell food for thought over the coming season.

Michael Dunlop had a massive run down the right wing on the stroke of half time, sending in a great ball to Chris Templeman, the ball unfortunately getting tangled in his feet before the Cove defender poorly cleared, McLellan fired wide from the poor defending.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 1 Cove Rangers 0

Four minutes into the second half it was two-nil, sub Gavin Malin swinging in a great corner for trialist Kieran Stewart to bullet home a header.

Fellow trialist Aaron James made a good block to deny Jamie McAllister in the 52nd minute, before McAllister nodded wide minutes later from a Chris Clark free-kick.

On the hour mark Cove sub Michael Selfridge should have scored when he collected a cross in the box before rounding sub keeper Ross Salmon, his shot then being blocked by a pile of bodies, Connor Scully blasting the loose ball wide.

The game started to slow down as each side made mass changes, seven being made in the space of fifteen minutes.

The third Loons trialist Andrew Steeves and then Gavin Swankie went close in a matter of minutes as the Loons started to get back into their stride after making their subs.

Danny Denholm added a third in the 79th minute, Dunlop sending a great ball forward for Dale Hilson to collect before pinging a ball across the face of Sandy Wood’s goal, Denholm popping up at the back post to stab home.

The closest anyone came to scoring in the final ten minutes was in the dying seconds when Kader’s cross was met by the defending Darren Kelly, his header fortunately for them flying inches past the post for a corner.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: Paul McLellan

Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas 6 (Ross Salmon 56, 6), Michael Dunlop 8, Andrew Steeves (t) 7, Darren Dods 6 (Stuart Malcolm 46, 6), Aaron James (t) 7, Liam Keiller 6 (Gavin Malin 42, 7), Craig Smith 7 (Danny Denholm 62, 6), Kieran Stewart (t) 6, Chris Templeman 6 (Gavin Swankie 62, 6), Paul McLellan 8 (Dale Hilson 62, 6), Omar Kader 8.

Sub not used: James Dale.

Cove Rangers: Sandy Wood, Chris Clark (Stuart Taylor 86), Alan Redford (Ryan Robertson 81), Darren Kelly, Eric Watson, Clark Bain (Ryan Stewart 70), Danny Park (Adam McMillan 85), Connor Scully (Blair Yule 86), Jamie McAllister (Eric Thomson 76), John Smith (Michael Selfridge 55), Jamie Lennox (Daryll Nicoll 59).

Subs not used: Barrie Stephen, Craig Reid.




Forfar Athletic 1 Livingston 1 (Pre-Season Friendly) 10th July 2014

Forfar Athletic   1

Dale Hilson 44

Livingston           1

Kyle Jacobs 53

In an enjoyable passing game, Forfar Athletic and Livingston drew 1-1 on a hot Thursday night at the Loons’ second Station Park pre-season friendly.

Dick Campbell made four changes from Tuesday’s 4-1 win over Inverurie Locos, with James Dale, Dale Hilson, Ross Salmon and Darren Dods coming in for two trialists, Darren Hill and Chris Templeman. The bench was again full of youth, Liam Keiller, Craig Smith, Paul McLellan and James Yates taking their place there again with Templeman, Douglas and the left back trialist from Tuesday the other substitutes.

The Loons were the much better side in the first half, tearing Livingston to bits with their slick passing time and time again and had almost every chance in the first 45 with Danny Denholm, Gavin Swankie, James Dale and Omar Kader all going very close in the first twenty minutes.

Swankie had three chances around the half hour mark to open the scoring but keeper Darren Jamieson was on hand to save each effort. Hilson and Swankie combined in the 35th minute for a great chance, Denholm passing to Hilson who in turn slid a through ball for Swankie, he backheeled the ball into the path of the oncoming Hilson but his shot was saved well by Jamieson.

The only non-Loons chance of the first half came in the 42nd minute, Burton O’Brien’s effort from far out not really troubling young Ross Salmon.

Forfar took a deserved lead into half time when they scored a minute before the break, a poor pass by a Livingston player in midfield was collected by Omar Kader, he drove forward before placing a through ball into the box, Gavin Swankie let it roll past him for Hilson to run in and slot home.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 1 Livingston 0

The visitors made eight substitutes at half time, with only Jamieson, Jason Talbot and Bradley Donaldson staying on.

They equalised in the 53rd minute when Kyle Jacobs slotted home from a Danny Mullen through ball.

Despite several chances for the Almondvale side, who were the better side in the second half, the closest Livingston came to scoring again was in the 78th minute, new signing Gary Glen beating several defenders with a great run, before his shot beat sub Rab Douglas but the trialist sub cleared the ball off the line.

Danny Denholm was very close to scoring the winner against his former club in the 87th minute as he collected a through ball from Swankie, his shot beating Jamieson but coming back off the post before being cleared by a defender.

Forfar Athletic: Ross Salmon (Rab Douglas 73), Michael Dunlop, Aaron James (t), Stuart Malcolm (Andrew Steeves (t) 52), Darren Dods, James Dale (Craig Smith 66), Omar Kader (Paul McLellan 72), Gavin Malin (Liam Keiller 61), Dale Hilson (Chris Templeman 46), Gavin Swankie, Danny Denholm.

Sub not used: James Yates.

Livingston: Darren Jamieson, Bradley Donaldson, Jason Talbot (Darren Moffat 81), Declan Gallagher (Callum Fordyce 46), Craig Sives (Jack Beaumont 46), Nejc Praprotnik (Shaun Rutherford 46), Michael McKenna (Myles Hippolyte 46), Burton O’Brien (Danny Mullen 46), Jordan White (Rob Ogleby 46), David Robertson (Kyle Jacobs 46), Mark Burchill (Gary Glen 46).

Sub not used: Callum Antell (gk).

Forfar Athletic 4 Inverurie Loco Works 1 (Pre-Season Friendly) 8th July 2014

Forfar Athletic                  4

Gavin Swankie 12, Chris Templeman 31, 45, Craig Smith 90

Inverurie Loco Works     1

Neil Gauld 46

Forfar Athletic started their pre-season at Station Park with a 4-1 win over Highland League runners up Inverurie Locos on a sunny Tuesday evening in what was a good run out for the squad.

Dick Campbell fielded a mixture of last season’s side, new signings, youth players and trialists against Inverurie, with Dale Hilson and Danny Denholm making their Station Park returns after signing for the Loons while Michael Dunlop also returned, although it was from a season long loan at Berwick Rangers. Three trialists started, with one on the bench alongside five of last season’s under 19 squad.

Forfar started off playing good football, the first opportunity coming after just four minutes when Omar Kader swung in a corner that the trialist wearing the number 8 shirt met with his head but could only nod the ball wide of the far post.

The trialist caused bother for the Locos defence again in the twelfth minute, slotting a ball through for Gavin Swankie, whose first shot was parried by ex-Loon Andy Reid but his follow up header fell into an empty net to give the home side the lead.

Nine minutes later he set up another chance, this time cutting the ball in from the right wing for Chris Templeman who opted to shoot wide rather than pass to the waiting Swankie. He then had a long range effort blocked by a defender as the midfielder with no name looked to impress Dick Campbell.

On the half hour mark Omar Kader and Gavin Malin combined to set up Danny Denholm, his effort pushed away by Reid as Forfar looked increasingly like doubling their advantage. A minute later they did just that when a free kick was passed to Denholm and his low cross to the front post was flicked into the net by Templeman from a tight angle.

Ten minutes before half time, Inverurie had their first proper chance on goal, David Ross testing Darren Hill from the edge of the box, forcing a corner. From that corner Neil Gauld had a shot blocked by the trialist left back on the line before his follow up was deflected over.

In the 37th minute a defensive lapse allowed Ross to race clear but his shot was stopped by Hill while his second opportunity was cleared for a corner that came to nothing.

The Aberdeenshire outfit had their own defensive error on the stroke of half time, Reid’s poor pass to a defender allowing an alert Chris Templeman to intercept and cooly stroke past Reid for his second and Forfar’s third.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 3 Inverurie Locos 0

Less than two minutes into the second half the away side had pulled a goal back, Neil McLean’s shot was turned round the post and from Mark Souter’s corner Neil Gauld bundled the ball home.

The trialist left back had his own chance in the 56th minute, collecting a Gavin Malin cut back inside the box but as he shaped up to shoot the ball was taken off his toes by a defender.

A minute later Malin created another chance, this time swinging in a corner for Darren Dods to blast a header towards goal, only for Ross Still to head off the line.

Gauld had a half volley pushed away by Hill just after the hour mark, at the other end sub Craig Smith set up Chris Templeman but Templeman curled his effort wide.

In the 77th minute the impressive James Yates, who had come on as a sub in the first half, went close to scoring from long range with a shot that swerved a lot as it headed towards goal, sub keeper Scott Mathieson caught the shot well though.

Sub and now permanent signing Dale Hilson raced clear of the Locos defence a minute later, attempting to lob Mathieson but the lob was too low and the keeper managed to tip the effort away.

The Loons put the final shine onto the scoreline in the final minute, Craig Smith latched onto a through ball before rounding Mathieson and slotting home from a tight angle to make it 4-1.

Ramblings of a Loon’s Player of the Match: The trialist at number three, who was ex St Johnstone left back Andrew Steeves, was up and down the left flank all night and looks like he would be a great signing.

Forfar Athletic: Darren Hill 6 (Ross Salmon 58, 6), Michael Dunlop 6 (James Yates 42, 8), Andrew Steeves (t) 8, Stuart Malcolm 6 (Darren Dods 46, 6), A Trialist 7, Gavin Malin 7 (James Dale 58, 6), Omar Kader 6 (Craig Smith 58, 7), B Trialist 7 (Liam Keiller 58, 6), Chris Templeman 7 (Paul McLellan 70, 5), Gavin Swankie 7 (Liam Campbell (t) 83, 4), Danny Denholm 7 (Dale Hilson 58, 6).

Inverurie Loco Works: Andy Reid (Scott Mathieson 46), Marc Young (Kieran Adams 46), Greg Mitchell (Ross Still 46), Scott Begg, Ross Anderson (Sam Pugh 73), Ryan Broadhurst, David Ross (Kyle Gordon 84), Mark Souter (Daniel Crisp 79), Neil Gauld, Neil McLean, Andy Hunter (Chris Hay 88).

Sub not used: Kenny Coull.