Newburgh’s match against bottom of the table West Calder was one of the few fixtures to go ahead on Saturday with the bad weather almost decimating the fixture card in the East region. West Calder has recently appointed a new management team and have almost completely overhauled their squad with a raft of experienced players being drafted in to try and turn the club’s fortunes around. In an effort to ensure the game went ahead West Calder switched the venue to Almonvale Stadium.
Scott Sutherland returned to the Newburgh starting line up having recovered from the knock he had taken a couple of weeks ago.
West Calder started the game well and looked very much the better team for the opening 10 minutes. Several chances were created as Newburgh were forced to defend an early onslaught from the home side.
The game settled down with most of the play being contained to the centre of the park as Newburgh began to take control of the game.
The deadlock was broken in the 30th minute with Scott Sutherland converting from the penalty spot having been up ended in the box the result of some clumsy defending as he tried to latch on to a Ben Scarborough through ball.
As some awful weather closed in the game became stretched with the pitch picking up a covering of snow. Newburgh took advantage with their pace in attack catching the home side out. Harry Galloway picked up the ball on the left-hand side of the penalty box and freed himself space to slot a strike underneath Dunnet in the West Calder goal.
Newburgh took the lead into the break hoping that the referee wouldn’t be forced to abandon the game. Thankfully the snow fall abated allowing the game to continue. Newburgh replaced Gordon Clark and Fraser Robinson with Andy Cameron and Callum Galloway at the break.
It was West Calder who struck first in the second half when a suspect offside was allowed to roll on. The ball was turned across the goalmouth where Shanks was on hand to turn the ball past Callum Sutherland.
Aidan Edwards was running riot in the wide areas for Newburgh with his pace and direct attacking causing the home defence problems every time he drove forwards. With Jack Hutchison and Ryan Kinnes anchoring the midfield Newburgh’s forward midfield three of Edwards, Fraser and Callum Galloway were linking well with the front two.
Newburgh’s third goal came in the 50th minute and was the result of some excellent driving play by Harry Galloway who broke to the bye line and slid in a pass to Kyle Fraser at the front post. Fraser turned the ball into the net from the tightest of angles to re-establish Newburgh’s two goal advantage.
West Calder fought back into the game almost immediately with a goal from Campbell the result of some excellent wide play by Swan who carved out the chance for the home side. Within three minutes of the re-start West Calder fought themselves level when a free kick from wide on the left by McRitchie was left by everyone and sneaked into the ‘Burgh goal at the far post.
The goalscoring purple patch continues in the game and it was Newburgh who re-established their lead in the 62nd minute. It was once again Edwards cut the home defence apart and slid a perfectly weighted pass to Jack Hutchison whose shot was deflected into the path of the un-marked Scott Sutherland who drove a shot over the line.
With Newburgh back in control and the home side tiring the ‘Burgh moved the ball around the park well ensuring that Calum Sutherlands goal was never threatened.
A corner late in the game led to Newburgh’s fifth and final goal of the game. Jamie Gay who had replaced Scott Sutherland swung in a threatening corner which Sam Kirkham got on the end off, the ball broke out of defence to Kyle Fraser who unleashed a left foot shot straight into the top corner to complete the scoring.
A late tackle by Harry Galloway as the game was coming to an end resulted in a red card for the ‘Burgh striker. The ensuing melee saw Swan also sent to the changing rooms early for retaliation.
Newburgh manager Scott Hudson was delighted to have kept the run of good form going “I said to the team before the game not to expect an easy match as I knew that West Calder had appointed a new manager and had made a lot of new signings. We played well in some really awful conditions and dug in when we had to”.
Newburgh are at home next weekend with Stoneyburn, the favourites to lift the league title the visitors. Kick off at East Shore Park is at 14:30.
|February 22, 2020||2:30 pm||South Premier League 2019-20||2019 - 20|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals|
|West Calder United||1||2||3|