|10th October 2020||15:00||Scottish Lowland Football League||2020-21|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|
|Civil Service Strollers FC||0||0||0||Loss|
‘Shire today returned to competitive football for the 1st time since 29th February after a period of enforced suspension due to Covid 19. Our opponents in our opening Scottish Lowland Football League match were Civil Service Strollers. This was the 9th meeting of the teams, 8 have been in the Lowland League. Although we have won 5 of those matches our home games against the Strollers have traditionally been close affairs The corresponding fixture last season saw us achieve our 1st and only home success against the Strollers when we scored 2 goals in the last 12 minutes of the match to win 2-1.
During the close season manager Del Ure had brought in 8 new players to the ‘Shire squad, 7 of whom started the match today at the Falkirk Stadium with the other listed as substitute. Although Government restrictions dictated that no fans were allowed into the ground to watch the match the ‘Shire board had generously decided to stream the match live for free.
‘Shire kicked off without club Captain Nicky Low who was suspended for the match. Jordan Tapping taking over the captain’s armband for the day.
Strollers had an early half chance when former ‘Shire defender, Chris McKee, saw his header held by Ross Connelly.
‘Shire then had 3 corners in 2 minutes but were unable to make anything of them.
In the 10th minute Craig Henderson ran up the left wing and won another corner for ‘Shire but again Strollers were able to clear their lines.
5 minutes later Connor Young tried his luck with an overhead volley from the edge of the ‘Shire box but it was easily held by Connelly.
With Strollers playing a defensive 532 formation ‘Shire changed from their 4231 formation to a 442 to take the game to the Edinburgh side.
Half way through the 1st half Henderson won possession 20 yards out from the Strollers goal and then cut right inside and laid off a short pass to Jamie Dishington who hit a 1st time shot which flew passed the post.
In the 26th minute a loose ‘Shire defensive header only reached Connor Young. The Strollers forward immediately hit a 1st time shot from the edge of the box which the home team were glad to see go just wide of the post.
‘Shire won yet another corner in the next minute but failed to convert the opportunity.
With half an hour on the clock Reis Peggie sent over a delightful cross into the box from the left wing which bounced over Kyle Fee’s head finding Dishington clear 8 years out. The right winger shot well but McKee was able to clear the danger.
‘Shire were now starting to put pressure on the away team and a long ball from Peggie saw a one on one with Robbie Young and Lewis Budinauckas, who had raced out of his goal. It appeared that the Strollers keeper handled the ball outside the box but despite ‘Shire appeals the referee waved play on and the chance was lost.
A minute later Kieran Gibbons hit a 25 yard strike which Budinauckas saved.
2 minutes on and ‘Shire continued on the attack, Henderson sending in a lovely ball from the left to the Strollers near post. However, there were no takers and the keeper was able to catch the ball easily.
6 minutes before the break Strollers captain, Mark McConnell, made a 2 footed challenge on Henderson which resulted in a bit of a coming together with the teams. The referee awarded ‘Shire a free kick but decided that McConnell just needed to be spoken to with the yellow card remaining in his pocket.
Shortly before half time Strollers won a free kick just over 20 yards out but Connor Young wasted the chance shooting into the ‘Shire wall.
Straight after Strollers had another free kick, this time from 30 yards which was lobbed into the ‘Shire box by Euan Bauld to Alieau Faye but the ‘Shire defence were able to clear his attempt.
‘Shire started the 2nd half on the attack with Marty Orr sending a perfect cross ball from the right which found the head of Robbie Young in the box. The forward’s resulting header was easily held by Budinaukas.
Straight after Dishington had a mazy run before being brought down at the edge of the Strollers box. Henderson hit the ensuing free kick into the wall.
Strollers came back, winning a corner which Ross Guthrie took finding Bauld unmarked 8 yards out but the big defender saw his header go just over the bar.
Then Orr sent a ball up field which found Ronan Kearney who cushioned the ball into the path of Peggie who hit a 1st time shot which was well saved at the post by the Strollers keeper for a corner. The away team were only able to clear that corner of another corner and it was the same again when ‘Shire won a 3rd corner in 2 minutes. This one was cleared by the Edinburgh team.
In 55 minutes ‘Shire made 2 changes with the front two being replaced by Andy Rodgers and Sean Brown.This was Rodgers 100th Lowland League appearance for the ‘Shire.
Only a minute later and ‘Shire nearly took the lead. Henderson sent in a corner from the left to Gibbons at the back post by his header was cleared off the line by Matthew Cunningham.
The Strollers then had a chance when McConnell passed a great low ball to Cunningham on the right and he sent in a ball to the box but Ross Connelly in the ‘Shire goal was able to cut it out.
‘Shire straight after won 2 corners but Strollers were able to deal with them.
Strollers then freshened up their team with a like for like change up top with John Dunn coming on.
20 minutes into the 2nd half and after a good passing movement Strollers Captain Mark McConnell tried his luck with a curling effort from the left edge of the box which went narrowly over the ‘Shire bar.
A minute later ‘Shire had a free kick which Rodgers laid off to Orr on the right who shot from 10 yards but it went over the bar.
‘Shire kept up the momentum as Gibbons ran into the box but his cross was checked. From the resulting corner Peggie sent in a beautiful ball which went into the crowded 6 yard box beyond the reach of Budinauckas and onto the head of McConnell who was lucky to see his header cleared off the line for a corner by Cunningham saving a certain own goal.
Strollers then replaced 2 of their team and ‘Shire continued to force the game. In 74 minutes Tapping sent in a long ‘Shire free kick from just inside the Strollers half which found Rodgers clear on the right of the box. The forward 1st timed a cross which just passed the boot of Brown in the 6 yard box and was then turned away for a ‘Shire corner which the home team were unable to take advantage of.
A few minutes on and Orr saw his shot from just inside the Strollers box held by Budinacukas.
Then in the 80th minute David Churchill scythed down Jamie Dishington which resulted in a booking for the Strollers player and gave ‘Shire a free kick 25 yards out. Up stepped Rodgers who curled in a temping ball into the Strollers box which was met by the foot of the onrushing Sean Brown who fired home from close in to put ‘Shire into a deserved lead.
This reverse saw a transformation of the Strollers outlook on the game with their defensive formation giving way to attack, moving to a 442. Only 2 minutes after the ‘Shire goal Cunningham had a pop from just inside the ‘Shire box which went over the bar.
‘Shire manager Del Ure sought to firm up the winning position and secure the result in the 85th minute with a double substitution with Lee Hadden and Adam Murray coming on. However, Strollers had other ideas.
With only 2 minutes of the 90 left from a Strollers corner Ross Connelly pulled off a miraculous finger tip save from the head of Faye following a great cross from the right wing.
The subsequent Strollers corner proved fruitless but only 1 minute on and Faye had another shot that went just wide of the ‘Shire post.
This brought on another ‘Shire change, the maximum 5th substitute allowed in line with the new League rules which came into place from today, with Trialist replacing Sean Brown as ‘Shire moved to a 451 formation to see out the match.
3 minutes into injury time and Strollers won a corner. Before it was taken they gambled and brought on 2 fresh players up top as they searched for the equaliser. The corner resulted in a scramble in the packed ‘Shire box but the home team held firm and the ball was cleared.
Just after Strollers pressed again and ‘Shire captain Jordan Tapping went him hard and was booked. Strollers had a final chance which came from the subsequent 30 yards free kick but John Dunn failed to conjure up a last gasp equaliser and ‘Shire were able to see out the dying seconds of the match to record an opening day triumph.
Today’s win was our 1st opening League triumph since August 2015. ‘Shire now looking to our next Lowland match away at Edinburgh University on Tuesday night.
East Stirlingshire: 1. Ross Connelly 2. Martin Orr (RB) 3. Gregg Wylde (LB) 4. Jordan Tapping (Captain) (RCD) 5. Gregg McColm (LCD) 6. Kieran Gibbons (RCM) 7. Jamie Dishington (RM) 8. Reis Peggie (LCM) 9. Ronan Kearney (CF) 10. Robbie Young (CM) 11. Craig Henderson (LM) Subs 12. Adam Murray (LB) (came on for 11. Craig Henderson in 86 mins 1 sec) 14. Eddie Malone (not Used) 15. Trialist (LCM) (came on for 18. Sean Brown in 89 mins 38 secs) 16. Lee Hadden (RM) (came on for 7. Jamie Dishington in 85 mins 50 secs) 18. Sean Brown (LF) (came on for 10. Robbie Young in 55 mins 33 secs) 19. Andy Rodgers (RF) (came on for 9. Ronan Kearney in 55 mins 19 secs) 20. Iain Ure (Sub gk) (not used)
Civil Service Strollers: 1. Lewis Budinauckas 15. Craig Newall (Captain) (RB) 14. John Brydon (RCD) 19. Euan Bauld (CD) 23. Chris McKee (LCD) 6. Kyle Fee (LB) 2. Matthew Cunningham (RM) 7. Mark McConnell (Captain) (CM) 18. Alieau Faye (LM) 10. Ross Guthrie (RF) 8. Connor Young (LF) Subs 3. Jonathan Devers (not used) 9. John Dunn (RF) (came on for 10. Ross Guthrie in 59 mins 12 secs) 11. David Churchill (LM) (came on for 8. Connor Young in 74 mins 20 secs) 12. Matthew Shaw (came on for Kyle Fee in 90+3 mins 49 secs) 20. Jonathan Moffat (came on for 15. Craig Newall in 90+3 mins 57 secs) 21. Nico Gibson (LB) (came on for 23. Chris McKee in 74 mins 22 secs)
Ht 0-0 Ft 1-0
East Stirlingshire Scorer: 1) Sean Brown (80 mins 52 secs)
East Stirlingshire Assist: 1) Andy Rodgers
East Stirlingshire Bookings: 1) Jordan Tapping (90+4 mins 34 secs)
Civil Service Strollers Bookings: 1) Chris McKee (65 mins 47 secs) 2) David Churchill (80 mins 15 secs)
Crowd: 0 – Closed Door Under Covid 19 Restrictions
Referee: Graham Grainger
Assistant Referee 1: Christopher Costello
Assistant Referee 2: Niall McGuinness
|East Stirlingshire (Falkirk Stadium)|
|#||Player||Position||Goals||Assists||Yellow Cards||Red Cards|
|3||Gregg Wylde||Defender, Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|7||Jamie Dishington 16||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|9||Ronan Kearney 19||Forward||0||0||0||0|
|10||Robbie Young 18||Midfielder, Forward||0||0||0||0|
|11||Craig Henderson 12||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|12||Adam Murray 11||Defender||0||0||0||0|
|15||Trialist 10.10.20 18||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|16||Lee Hadden 7||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|18||Sean Brown 15||Forward||1||0||0||0|
|19||Andy Rodgers 9||Forward||0||1||0||0|
Civil Service Strollers FC
|#||Player||Position||Goals||Assists||Yellow Cards||Red Cards|
|15||Craig Newall 20||Defender||0||0||0||0|
|23||Chris McKee 21||Defender||0||0||1||0|
|6||Kyle Fee 12||Defender||0||0||0||0|
|18||Alieau Faye||Midfielder, Forward||0||0||0||0|
|10||Ross Guthrie 9||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|8||Connor Young 11||Forward||0||0||0||0|
|9||John Dunn 10||Forward||0||0||0||0|
|11||David Churchill 8||Midfielder, Forward||0||0||1||0|
|12||Matthew Shaw 6||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|20||Jonathan Moffat 15||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|21||Nico Gibson 23||Defender||0||0||0||0|