Forfar Farmington 3
Keira Johnstone 19, Jade McLaren 37, Lindsey Dunbar 73
Heart of Midlothian 2
Amy Harrison 65, Danielle Diey 88 pen
Forfar Farmington advanced to the third round of the Scottish Cup with a deserved 3-2 scoreline at a sunny but wet Station Park on Sunday.
Keira Johnstone and Jade McLaren put Forfar in front at half time before Amy Harrison pulled a goal back for Hearts, sub Lindsey Dunbar restored the advantage but they were made to sweat in the dying moments, Danielle Diey scoring a penalty after Gemma Collier was sent off.
Speaking after the match, head coach Damon Neish felt it was “I thought it was a great advert for women’s football, both ourselves and Hearts played some lovely football, we pressed high, showed good spirit and it was a really good game.”
“It’s good to get a win, we’ve deserved a lot more than we’ve got this season in the league, we’re maybe seven or eight points off where we should be in my opinion, with the performances we’ve put in, we’ve definitely deserved more than the points are showing so it was good to get a win and get some of the pressure off, go out and just play.”
“It was a great performance, it was brilliant seeing Keira on the scoresheet, Lindsey Dunbar responded excellently coming off the bench and doing what needed to be done, so I’m very happy.”
Forfar made two changes after last week’s narrow defeat to Rangers, with Kayleigh Brough returning to the squad and Derrian Gollan stepping up to the starting eleven, right back Sophie Milligan was unavailable while Lindsey Dunbar had to be content with a spot on the bench.
The home side had the first chance in the fourth minute, Holly Napier’s short corner to Gollan was played back to her before she set up Amy Gallacher, who curled her effort wide. Hearts had one of their very scarce chances in the eleventh minute but Brogan Anderson blasted a volley over the bar when it was easier to keep it down.
Keira Johnstone opened the scoring deservedly for Farmington after nineteen minutes, a delightful through ball split the Hearts defence and Johnstone latched onto it before rounding the keeper and rolling the ball into the empty net for her second of the season.
Kayleigh Noble was inches away from doubling the advantage two minutes later, shooting after a Jade McLaren cross but the ball was deflected just past the far post by a defender.
Noble and Amy Gallacher both had shots saved after great work forcing their way into the box in quick succession.
In the 32nd minute Hearts had another effort on goal, this time Michelle Faughnan forcing McNicoll into a fantastic save. Forfar added a second five minutes later, Nicola Davidson’s free kick from the halfway line being met by Jade McLaren, who managed to put the ball in the right end this week after a torrid time in previous games this season.
Forfar hunted to extend the deserved lead after half time when Amy Gallacher saw her shot held but Hearts were determined to make a game of it with Amy Harrison’s ambitious overhead kick went over. They did pull a goal back in the 65th minute, Harrison slotting the ball home.
Holly Napier had a free kick land on the roof of Autumn Farrell’s net four minutes later, with Lindsey Dunbar then coming on for Kayleigh Noble. Four minutes after coming on, the energetic midfielder had restored the side’s two goal advantage, racing to the back post to stab home Amy Gallacher’s cut back after some very impressive work by the youth internationalist on the left.
Hearts’ Sharon Hughes sent a sitter over the bar as they desperately looked for a way back into the tie.
Gallacher made a great effort to work her way into the box beating several defenders but as she went to shoot fell over, scoring a 4 out of 10 on the Olympic diving scorecards.
Gallacher had another opportunity in the 80th minute, curling her shot into Farrell’s arms before away scorer Harrison was booked for an off the ball incident with Laura Parsley.
The ref was forced to bring out her cards again in the 88th minute, the ball was punted into the Forfar half and Brogan Anderson beat Fiona McNicoll to it in the middle of the half, but McNicoll managed to stop her getting a shot away until there was a defender back. Anderson took a shot that looked to possibly be going wide but it was stopped by a great save from defender Gemma Collier, who was sent off.
Danielle Diey stepped up to fire home the resulting penalty but despite pressuring Forfar in the final moments, Farmington who held to book their place in the next round of the Scottish Cup.
Neish was delighted and thinks it isn’t long before someone is beaten comprehensively by Farmington “We’re building confidence all the time, confidence shouldn’t really be an issue, we’re playing well and doing the right things, it was only a matter of time before we scored a few goals and we’re still capable of turning it on and hammering somebody, we just need the rub of the green.”
Forfar Farmington: Fiona McNicoll, Jade McLaren, Megan Burns, Gemma Collier, Kayleigh Brough, Nicola Davidson, Holly Napier, Amy Gallacher, Derrian Gollan, Keira Johnstone (Laura Parsley 77), Kayleigh Noble (Lindsey Dunbar 69)
Hearts: Autumn Farrell, Danielle Diey, Megan Paterson, Carly Noble (Demi Falconer 46), Kara Kidd (Sharon Hughes 46), Brogan Anderson, Kirsten Reilly, Gemma Mason (Sam Cunningham 78), Stacey Hutchison, Michelle Faughnan (Rebecca Smith 78), Amy Harrison.
Sub not used: Jennifer Currie (gk)