Breedon Highland Football League Saturday March 30th 2019 Fraserburgh 2️⃣ Inverurie Loco Works 4️⃣ Broch: Flinn Buchan Hay Cowie K Simpson Rae Beagrie Combe (West) Campbell Butcher (Johnston) S Barbour. Unused subs Cepulis J Simpson J Barbour Locos: A Reid T Reid Mitchell Watt (Hunter) Souter Broadhurst Michie McLean Gauld Angus Stott. Unused subs Duff Herd Smith Rennie Gordon Cook Referee - Greg Soutar Inverurie Locos headed to Bellslea Park on Saturday to complete their away SHFL schedule & suitably buoyed by Messrs Cooper, Park & Low committing to extended deals running through to at least the summer of 2022, that news being announced around three hours ahead of kick off. Fraserburgh have had a tremendous league campaign, with the squad & the coaching team deserving of much credit. The Broch was drenched in sunshine but a stiffish wind blowing from the town centre brought challenging conditions & a chill to this late March fixture. The surface was really fiery & bumpy & alas these conditions were to limit the quality on show, but in typical Highland League style, the entertainment & the spectacle did not disappoint. Sean Butcher was nearly right through straight from the kick off but a superb Ryan Broadhurst intervention avoided a terrible start. Neil Gauld then wriggled free wide right but his centred ball was met with a heavy Ryan Stott touch. The match ball was close to requiring oxygen on several occasions as neither side was much having much joy in taking it down & finding a jersey, instead head tennis & hoof & woof were the order of the day. Neil Gauld again caused issues for the Broch before a sumptuous Jamie Michie cross was just too strong for the onrushing Railwaymen. The same player then drove the ball wide. Brock keeper Flinn was to have the most troubled of afternoons & a wee ‘taster’ came when he dropped a routine take on the edge of his box. An offside flag spared his blushed but the die was cast for later shenanigans. Fraserburgh slung in a wicked cross that saw Greg Mitchell react the quickest & clear away. A tangle of legs was adjudged, harshly, to be a foul committees by skipper McLean, but the resultant Aidan Combe free kick was charged down. Andy Watt, a terrific success for Inverurie this term, twice mopped up danger, showing the trademark maturity & proper ‘fitba heid’ that has impressed the Locos faithful since his introduction to the first team. Fraserburgh went ahead with the first attempt on target. Ryan Stott surrendered possession allowing the home side to break, Greg Mitchell was skinned, leaving Paul CAMPBELL to shoot home easily from close in. It was perhaps indicative of the all too soft type of goal that has been conceded too often during the campaign, with a return to the miserly concession of goals from 2017/18 being a key target for 2019/20. Locos didn’t feel sorry for themselves & inside six minutes were level. Bryan Hay fouled Chris Angus inside the Broch box. Initially it seems the referee was perhaps unsighted but a proactive flag from the stand side linesman alerted the man in the middle that it was a stonewall penalty. After due consideration the referee realised he had no option but to dismiss Hay, his challenge not involving any real possibility to play the ball. His team-mates were going crazy but there wasn’t really any controversy at all. Neil GAULD stayed focussed & swept the spot kick high into the net. Gauld then dragged a shot wide. In classic & stereotypical mode, Fraserburgh dug in when faced with adversity & went 2-1 up with their second attempt on target. It was that man CAMPBELL again, feasting on weak attempts to clear Locos lines, ramming the ball home, sharp opportunistic finishing. HT 2-1 to the home club. The wind was gaining strength as the second half began. Beagle flattened Gauld as he broke through, the Michie free kick fumbled by Flinn. Mike Rae was playing his last home match for Broch & in truth really should have been dismissed for an over the ball & airborne foul on Jamie Michie. Referee Soutar contented himself with a yellow, which might have been red had the side not already been down to ten men, & had Jamie Michie gone into full thespian mode. Kieran Simpson hooked his left footed shot wide of the Andy Reid left upright. Locos were really struggling at this point & Scott Barbour had a drive deflected wide. However the match totally changed dynamics when Mark SOUTER cast himself as Rhett Butler crashed home a Gone With The Wind special from around the fifty yard mark. The popular & combative centre half got his laces right through the ball from the Main Stand side of the park but even with the wind assisting the ball’s journey it really should have been a routine save had the keeper’s starting position been better, or had he moved his feet quicker. Anyway 2-2 & this was a game changer. Next the ball deflected high towards the Flinn goal again & the young man had an awkward flap in getting the ball over the bar somehow. Chris Angus volleyed wide & a Souter header smacked into Angus & fell kindly into the arms of the keeper. The tide had turned & Locos looked more bullish & at last as if they had a numeric advantage. Andy Hunter was yellowed for high boot, Ryan Broadhurst had the same fate for a trip, with Cowie’s subsequent free-kick straight at big Andy Reid. Thirteen regulation minutes left & 3-2 to Inverurie! Chris ANGUS made room for himself inside the box with stylish grace & poise, his shot deflected over Flinn, who again appeared to be favourite to keep the ball out. Scott Barbour shot just wide, with the dangerous home flair player superbly marshalled by Ryan Broadhurst. Neil Gauld had a shot saved, with Chris Angus then yellowed for time wasting. Ryan Stott’s first Locos goal nearly then arrived but his well struck effort rose over the bar. The match was in its ninety fourth minute when Man of the Match Jamie Michie shot home, again with a deflection, & again, without wanting to annoy the goalies’ union, it really should have been fielded. FT Broch 2 Locos 4. Inverurie had played far better at this venue & left the park with a solitary point or less, but such is the nature sometimes of our national sport. The lads never gave up, played right to the final whistle & were worth the full pointage. Locos don’t have a fixture on April 6th (Harlaw Park will be hosting the Highland League Cup Final that day between Cove Rangers & Formartine United) & conclude their campaign on Saturday April 13th at Harlaw v Rothes. That day is also the Community Day. Match Stats - Locos first. Shots ON 7-3, Shots OFF 4-2, Fouls 14-10, Corners 5-6, Offside 2-3. 

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