Newburgh 1 – Brechin Vics 2
Newburgh fielded an un-changed line up from the previous week’s solid display against Kirrie Thistle. With transfer listed duo Alan Tulleth and Darren Hood now loaned out to Kinnoull in Perth Graham Nicol’s options for the game were limited.
Newburgh started brightly with the first chance of the game being created by Elder who drove a cross over the penalty area just out of the reach of the advancing Harris.
As Brechin settled into their stride they began to impose themselves on the game with player manager King looking lively up front combining well with Strachan to carve space for a shot that whistled over the Newburgh bar.
With 20 minutes played Newburgh were aggrieved to not receive a penalty when McAdam was brought down in the penalty area. The referee did not agree with the home fans demand for a penalty waving play on. Another poor refereeing decision was to cost Newburgh a goal after 28 minutes when a sweetly struck Ferguson drive crashed off the underside of the crossbar and clearly bounced over the goal line ricocheting back up into the keeper hands. The referee once more waved play on.
The second half started as the first had finished with some furious paced end to end play that never resulted in any clear cut chances.
The deadlock was broken on the 62nd minute with the visitors taking the lead. A cross field ball to the left looked offside to the Burgh defence who called for the decision with the referee, this indecision allowed the wide player to cut in and deliver a pin point ball that was beautifully turned beyond Houston for 1-0 to the Vics.
Newburgh pressed to make their mark in the game and were caught too far up the park with only 8 minutes left on the clock when newly introduced substitute Fertacz beat two ‘Burgh defenders to slam the ball into the side netting beyond the advancing Houston.
Newburgh dragged themselves into the game with 3 minutes remaining when David Gray, only on the park 2 minutes, made a direct run at the visitors defence and smashed a left foot shot towards goal. Grays drive sailed into the top of the net beating the keeper to give the home side hope.
This was short lived as they could not craft an equaliser. Nicol was visibly disappointed after the game “we seemed to have a lot of the ball but we were not able to break through the well organised defence with any real threat. I said to the team before the game that this would be a very tight game as both fixtures last year were close”.
Newburgh travel to Premier League Dalkeith Thistle on Saturday in the first round of the Fife & Lothians Cup.
Newburgh: Houston, Davidson, McAdam, Ross, Gow, Ferguson, Jones, McNiven (Gray 77), Harris, Elder (Spence 77), Wilson
Subs – White, Slamman, Butters
Kirriemuir Thistle 0 – Newburgh 2
Newburgh travelled to Kirriemuir on Saturday with Dylan Honeyman unable to travel due to illness. Graham Nicol made five changes to the starting team that had lost to Lochore the previous week in the EOS Cup.
The home team started the game well with the majority of the possession in the opening 10 minutes of the game. Craig Houston’s goal, however, was never threatened. With Steven Harris the lone striker Newburgh’s five man midfield started to stamp their authority on the game. Bruce McAdam was causing problems for the Kirrie defence every time he picked the ball up in an advanced position. Newburgh almost opened the scoring after 25 minutes when McAdam header was flicked on to Harris who could not find time to craft a shot on target with his effort whistling just wide.
McAdam was to come closest in the first half to scoring when his driven right foot shot rattled the cross bar with the home keeper well beaten.
The referee had just started the second half when early Newburgh pressure ended in them being awarded a corner. The out swinging set piece was poorly cleared by the home defence with the ball falling to Jones on the edge of the box; the midfielder guided a sweetly struck volley down past the keeper to give Newburgh a deserved lead.
Newburgh could have added to this lead on the 55th minute when some great work by Elder on the left resulted in a cross being driven fiercely across the face of the goal just out of the reach of the sliding striker Harris.
A determined McAdam run from midfield on the 62nd minute found him advancing in on goal with the defenders trailing in his wake, the ‘Burgh livewire was halted by the advancing keeper with a lunging tackle. The referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty with McAdam having been denied a goal scoring opportunity.
Steven Harris took charge of the kick smashing a shot past the keeper to give Newburgh a more comfortable advantage.
Newburgh continued to control the game from this point onwards and the home side never really created much to gain a foothold in the game. Newburgh introduced Spence and Gray with 15 minutes remaining to give fresh legs to the team in midfield.
Manager Nicol was delighted with his team’s performance “we were worried that there may have been a bit of a hangover after last weeks poor display but all credit to the team they stuck to the game plan today. The midfield worked really hard to limit Thistle’s possession in the centre of the park”.
Brechin Vic’s are the visitors to East Shore Park on Saturday. Brechin will prove a stern test for the ‘Burgh having had a good solid start to their season. Kick off is at 14:30
Newburgh: Houston, Davidson, Wilson, Gow, Ross, McAdam, Ferguson, McNiven (Gray 75), Jones, Elder (Spence 75), Harris
Subs: White, Slamman, Butters
Kirriemuir Thistle 0 Newburgh 2
Burgh scorers: Jones 46 Harris 62(p)
Newburgh have made striker Alan Tulleth and defender Darren Hood available for transfer
Enquiries should be made via the club secretary Denise Roberts whose contact details can be found on the clubs website www.clubwebsite.co.uk/newburghjuniors
Lochore Welfare 3 – Newburgh 0
Newburgh travelled to Lochore to play fellow North League side Lochore Welfare in the first round of the East of Scotland cup on Saturday.
Manager Graham Nicol rang the changes drafting Butters, Wilson, Jones and Slamman into the starting line up.
Newburgh started the game brightly taking the play to the home side. The first chance fell to Tulleth who spotted the home keeper well off his line, the ‘Burgh striker lofted a speculative drive from just inside the Lochore half just over the bar.
Midway through the first period Elder’s pace was causing Lochore problems, a jinking run allowed him to steer a shot that whistled just past the post.
Lochore created several chances just before the break, none of which really troubled the Newburgh goal.
After the break the home side came out with their tails up pressing the game further up the pitch in an effort to break the deadlock.
On the 58th minute a free kick was awarded to the home side within striking distance of the ‘Burgh goal. The free kick was curled up and over the wall and parried by Butters, the ball fell to Lochore striker Celetano who lifted the ball up and over the ‘Burgh keeper into the net.
Lochore doubled their lead on the 71st minute when poor defending at a corner gifted a free goal bound header to allow the home side some breathing space in the game.
Newburgh changed formation going to three at the back with the introduction of Gow and McNiven.
This almost worked instantly with McNiven finding space to crash a left foot shot towards goal which was kept out with an outstanding save from the Lochore keeper parrying the ball round the post.
Newburgh continued to press leaving gaps at the back as they tried to haul themselves into the game.
The final goal came with only 3 minutes remaining when a break away attack got behind the ‘Burgh defence. The ball was pulled back across goal into Celetano’s path allowing the recently signed striker to double his tally for the day tying the game up at 3-0 to Lochore.
Manager Nicol was disappointed with the result and couldn’t find many positives after the game “I always try to pick out the good things seen after defeat but I am struggling today as there were no pass marks out there, we were not at the races today. No one is to blame it really was all over the park we struggled”.
This Saturday Newburgh return to league duty and travel to Kirriemuir Thistle kick off is at 14:30
Newburgh: Butters, Honeyman, Wilson (McNiven 78), Davidson, Hood, Elder, Jones (McNiven 78), Ferguson, Slamman (Gray 58), Tulleth, Harris
Newburgh welcomed Lochee Harp to East Shore Park on Saturday with the ‘Burgh squad missing several key players due to injury. Manzie, Elder and Ross were unavailable to manager Nicol.
Newburgh added Fraser Wilson signed midweek from Fife Thistle and Peter Jones to the squad.
Newburgh started the game well pushing forward without managing to push through the visitor’s stubborn defence. The first chance of the game fell to Newburgh on the 22nd minute Harris found himself space on the edge of the box to direct a shot at goal which was dealt with by the Harp keeper at his near post.
The visitors grew in stature towards the end of the first half and some nice wide play was causing the ‘Burgh defence problems. The goal threat was however being well dealt with by the central defensive partnership of Davidson and Hood.
On the 32nd minute the home side felt aggrieved to not receive a penalty from the referee when Harris was up-ended in the penalty area. Newburgh were pushing for the opening goal and on the stroke of half time a Tulleth drive shook the post with the keeper beaten.
In the opening exchanges of second half Lochee could have opened the scoring when some free flowing football down the right resulted in a driven cross whistling between the Houston’s goal and the retreating ‘Burgh defence.
Newburgh made a tactical change with 20 minutes remaining bring on debutant Fraser Wilson and Peter Jones to replace the tiring Gray and McNiven. Wilson slotted into the left back position allowing McAdam to push forward into the midfield area.
This had an effect on the flow of the game with Newburgh managing to press the tiring Harp defence back and create several half chances, the best of which fell to McAdam inside the box, unfortunately his shot sailed wide off his weaker right foot.
The pressure told with 10 minutes remaining when another McAdam drive into the penalty area found him bearing in on goal only to be fouled just as he was about to unleash a shot goal wards. The referee had no hesitation in awarding the home side a penalty. Steven Harris stepped up for the second week in a row and converted the spot kick to give Newburgh the lead.
Lochee attempted to find an equaliser in the remaining minutes but could not eke an opening with Houston in the ‘Burgh goal never troubled.
Nicol was pleased to have another 3 points in the bag “Lochee are a well organised team and they set up not to lose games which is difficult to break down so I am delighted that we have secured the win. With important players out it was testament to the squad that the guys stepped up to the mark and ground out the result”.
There is a break from the League campaign next Saturday with Newburgh travelling to face Lochore Welfare in the first round of the D J Laing East of Scotland cup cup at Central Park Lochore.
Newburgh: Houston, Honeyman, Davidson, Hood, McAdam, Ferguson, Gray (Jones 72), McNiven (Wilson 72), Spence, Tulleth, Harris
Subs – White, Slamman, Butters