Forfar Athletic 1 Inverness Caledonian Thistle 2 (League Cup Group A) 29th July 2017

Inverness Caledonian Thistle got themselves out of a sticky situation as they came from behind to beat Forfar Athletic 2-1 at Station Park.

While Forfar finished bottom of Group A, Inverness finished second but failed to reach the second round through the back door.

Marc Scott put Forfar ahead after Liam Polworth missed a penalty however George Oakley and John Baird ensured all three points left Station Park with the visitors.

Inverness had the first opportunity five minutes in when George Oakley fired straight into Marc McCallum’s arms.

Eddie Malone blasted over from a Mark Millar lay off with Riccardo Calder failing to threaten McCallum with his effort at the other end.

Ousman See saw his shot blocked for the Loons but the visitors had a great chance to go ahead in the 31st minute when Jamie Bain committed a foul inside the box.

Liam Polworth stepped up to take the spot kick but couldn’t beat the keeper with McCallum diving the right way to deny the midfielder.

Both keepers were called into action to deny Jim Lister and John Baird but See should have put Forfar ahead however the summer signing blasted over.

The Loons took the lead just three minutes after the break; David Cox’s cross found Lister and after his shot was parried and spun up, Marc Scott nodded in from a yard out.

Scott almost grabbed an assist a minute later when he laid the ball off for Millar to fire over the bar.

Within six minutes of going behind Inverness were ahead; eventually penetrating the Forfar defence as Oakley slotted home from 25 yards after a poor clearance while John Baird rifled past McCallum from close range.

Polworth forced an impressive stop from McCallum before Michael Travis cleared an Oakley shot off the line.

See had another chance for the Loons when he rose to meet a Cox cross but couldn’t keep the header down.

He then set up Malone who shot inches over the bar from just inside the box.

Malone saw an excellent volley saved by Ridgers in the final fifteen minutes as the visitors scraped past Forfar.

Forfar now look to their league campaign, starting at home to Airdrieonians next Saturday.

Forfar Athletic: McCallum, Travis, Bain, Malone, Munro, Mensing, Cox (Aitken 79), Millar (McBride 50), Lister, See, Scott

Subs not used: Kennedy, Gill, Warwick, Easton, King (gk)

Inverness Caledonian Thistle: Ridgers, Raven, Chalmers, Elsdon, Polworth, Draper, Baird (Bell 83), Vigurs, Oakley (Zschusschen 70), Calder (Mulraney 75), McKay

Subs not used: Cooper, MacDonald, Esson (gk)

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Forfar Athletic 6 Nairn County 1 (Pre-Season Friendly) 15th July 2017

The Loons completed their pre-season schedule with a comfortable 6-1 win at home to Nairn County on Saturday.

A Matthew Aitken hat-trick within 32 minutes along with Jim Lister’s header and Marc Scott saw Forfar five ahead at the break; Eddie Malone’s long range effort adding the sixth before Jack MacLean netted Nairn’s consolation.

Forfar fielded new signing Simon Mensing in defence along with a new trialist with none of the four trialists who played in the previous three games in the squad.

The trialist nodded wide of the mark in the fifth minute however sixty seconds later Jamie Bain’s cross was nodded in at the back post by Matthew Aitken.

Dylan Easton fired past the post shortly after prior to setting up Scott McBride, his effort held by Ryan MacLeod.

Aitken added a second in the 19th minute; Mark Millar’s corner fumbled was by the keeper and the young striker gleefully tapped home.

He completed his hat trick after 32 minutes as he rose to head home another Bain cross.

Sixty seconds later it was 4-0 as Jim Lister sent another header past the keeper from McBride’s cross.

Marc Scott added a fifth on the stroke of half time as he diverted a McBride ball in off the left hand post.

Four changes were made at half time with U20 Player of the Year Greg Warwick making his second appearance for the senior side, his first coming in October last season as a trialist against Edinburgh City.

The Loons scoring was completed five minutes after the break; Eddie Malone finding the top corner from 25 yards after being allowed far too much space by the visitors.

Aitken could have added a fourth just before the hour mark when he connected with a cross to the front post.

Nairn pulled a goal back in the 68th minute through sub Jack MacLean, who had been on the pitch for all of ten minutes. A lapse in concentration allowed MacLean in and he slipped the ball under Jason King.

Action was low in the final twenty minutes with the only real opportunity coming with five minutes left as David Cox fired over from close range from Jamie Gill’s cross.

The Loons begin their competitive season on Tuesday as they travel to Angus rivals Brechin City in their first League Cup Group A fixture.

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum (Jason King 60), Jamie Bain, Eddie Malone, Mark Millar (Michael Travis 46), Trialist (Andy Munro 46), Simon Mensing (David Cox 60), Marc Scott, Dylan Easton (Jamie Gill 46), Jim Lister (Greg Warwick 46), Matthew Aitken (Ousman See 60), Scott McBride

Nairn County: Ryan MacLeod (Dylan MacLean 57), Ryan MacDonald (Craig Munro 77), Cohen Ramsay, Callum McLean, Glenn Main, Adam Porritt (Callum Ednie 57), Adam Naismith, Kenny McKenzie (Jack MacLean 57), Dylan MacKenzie (Matty MacLeod 77), Jordan Macrae (Max Ewan 65), Ewen Urquhart

Forfar Athletic 1 Formartine United 1 (Pre-Season Friendly) 8th July 2017

Forfar Athletic continued their pre-season programme with an uneventful 1-1 draw at home to Highland League side Formartine United.

After falling behind to a Paul Lawson penalty, Andy Munro equalised with a header on the stroke of half time in their second of four friendlies in eleven days.

Four trialists were named in the starting line up along with U20 winger Jamie Gill while Dylan Easton made his first appearance from the bench.

There was little to shout home about in the first half with Wayne MacIntosh’s volley flying wildly over the bar the only thing resembling a chance in the first 15 minutes.

Marc Scott had an effort pushed away by Ewan MacDonald before the loose ball was cleared with the trialist wearing number ten lurking.

Former Montrose striker Garry Wood saw his shot parried by Marc McCallum however Scott Barbour could only watch as his goalbound effort was diverted past the post.

In the 37th minute the visitors took the lead from the penalty spot after Michael Travis fouled Wood; Paul Lawson stepped up and sent McCallum the wrong way.

The Loons pulled a goal back seconds before the break when Mark Millar’s free kick into the danger zone was bulleted past MacDonald by Andy Munro.

If anyone came up to Station Park to watch the second half, they were in for a shock with not much to report on.

Lawson came close for the visitors twice with long range efforts after the hour mark; his second curling inches past the post with McCallum beaten.

Forfar’s only clear cut opportunity in the second half fell to sub Scott McBride with his surging run ending in his shot curling into the arms of former Loon Andy Reid.

The side are back in action on Tuesday as they host former Loons manager Neil Cooper’s Inverurie Loco Works.

Forfar Athletic: Marc McCallum, Trialist, Jamie Bain, Trialist (Matthew Aitken 77), Andy Munro, Michael Travis, Marc Scott (Scott McBride 59), Mark Millar, Trialist (Ousman See 46), Trialist (Jim Lister 46), Jamie Gill (Dylan Easton 59)

Formartine United: Ewan MacDonald (Andy Reid 46), Calum Dingwall (Ross Gibbons 77), Archie McPhee, Paul Lawson, Scott Henry (Murray Esson 87), Wayne MacIntosh (Kieran Lawrence 65), Graham Rodgers (Sam Muirhead 46), Stuart Anderson, Scott Ferries (Cameron Heslop 89), Garry Wood (Jevan Anderson 48), Scott Barbour (Liam Burnett 46)

Forfar Athletic 4 Cove Rangers 2 (Pre-Season Friendly) 4th July 2017

Forfar Athletic defeated Cove Rangers 4-2 in their opening pre-season friendly on Tuesday at Station Park.

Goals from Michael Travis, Scott McBride, Matthew Aitken and a trialist sealed the win with Mitch Megginson and Paul McManus netting for the visitors.

Gary Bollan fielded three trialists from the start, including former Loons loanee Marc McCallum and ex-Montrose midfielder Kieran McWalter while two trialists made appearances from the bench.

The game got off to a slow start with Cove having the only clear cut chance of the opening quarter of an hour coming from Cove’s Harry Milne; his overhead kick flying over the bar from ten yards.

Forfar took the lead in the 19th minute after captain Michael Travis headed home Mark Millar’s corner at the back post.

The Loons weren’t ahead for long and just three minutes later Milne’s shot found its way to Mitch Megginson and he gleefully lashed past McCallum.

The trialist midfielder volleyed over while Ryan Strachan did the same at the other end with both sides beginning to carve out chances.

Marc Scott came closest to a second for Forfar in the first half however he could only fire wide from six yards.

Megginson was unlucky not to net again seven minutes before the break when his header was cleared off the line by Andy Munro.

The Loons did retake the lead just sixty second into the second half with another Millar corner; Scott McBride powering a header home on this occasion.

Shortly after the hour mark Jamie Masson rattled the crossbar with a fierce effort but just a minute later fellow substitute Paul McManus fired underneath McCallum to level the scores again.

With chances few and far between in the second half, there wasn’t much to write about until Matthew Aitken put Forfar ahead for the third time with ten minutes left; slotting through John McCafferty’s legs.

Jamie Buglass forced a good save from McCallum but it was Forfar who netted again when Aitken squared the ball for a trialist to bundle home at the near post.

Forfar Athletic: Trialist, Trialist, Jamie Bain, Trialist (Jamie Gill 70), Andy Munro, Michael Travis, Marc Scott (Trialist 80), Mark Millar, Jim Lister (Trialist 63), Ousman See (Matthew Aitken 58), Scott McBride

Subs not used: Michael Kennedy, Jason King (gk)

Cove Rangers: John McCafferty, Grant Campbell, Harry Milne (Jamie Buglass 80), Sam Burnett (Cameron Milne 66), Eric Watson, Darren Kelly, Dan Park (Jamie Masson 55), Ryan Strachan (Hamish McLeod 90), Mitch Megginson (Matthew McDonald 75), Connor Scully (Sam Robertson 67), Ryan Stott (Paul McManus 55)

Subs not used: Reigan Thomson, Stuart McKenzie (gk)