uNDER 19s match report
RAITH ROVERS 3:3 AIRDRIE UNITED Sunday 18th March 2012
Airdrie United Under 19s produced an excellent comeback to draw 3-3 with league leaders Raith Rovers Under 19s at Dalgety Bay Sports Centre in our final league game of the season.
For the game our Under 19s were missing management team Stevie Findlay and Mick McFaulds due to personal commitments therefore first team coach Alan Lawrence took charge and he made one change to the starting eleven from the side that won 5-2 against East Fife Under 19s a week ago as Ryan McSherry returned from suspension and was handed a start at the expense of Lee Donnelly who was on the substitutes bench.
Our Under 19s started the game brightest and had the first chance of it on the 13th minute when Andrew Gilchrist hit a curling shot from inside the box but Raith goalkeeper Jordan Roberts made the save and five minutes later Andrew Gilchrist had another chance when he tried to chip Jordan Roberts from about 20 yards out but the ball went harmlessly over the bar. Raith responded with their first chance on the 25th minute when they won a free kick as from it the ball was crossed into the box and a Raith player who looked to have elbowed Ryan McSherry in the face when jumping headed the ball into the back of the net to give Raith an undeserved 1-0 lead.
Airdrie responded to going a goal down positively and went straight in search of the equalizer as on 26th minute Chris Patrick hit a shot from inside the box but Jordan Roberts made the save and a minute later Danny Burns had a chance when he hit a shot on the volley from inside the box but again the ball went wide. Airdrie continued to create chances and on the 29th minute Andrew Gilchrist had another chance when he got onto the end of a Danny Burns cutback cross with a header but the ball went over the bar and two minutes later Liam Watt had a chance as he hit a shot from inside the box but the ball went over the bar.
Raith were struggling to cope with our young diamonds and on the 32nd minute things got harder for them as Lawrie McMaster was sent off for violent conduct after kicking Kyle Nicoll in an off the ball incident and shortly after this Ryan McSherry had a good chance when he got away from his marker to send a header goalwards from a cross into the box but it lacked accuracy and went wide. Our Under 19s continued there assault on the Raith Rovers goal and on the 33rd minute Danny Burns had a good chance when he raced one on one with Jordan Roberts and hit a shot but Jordan made the save to keep Raith in front however a minute later Airdrie finally scored when they won a corner as from it the ball was crossed into the box and Danny Burns who usually scores goals with his feet got onto the end of it with his head and the ball went into the net for a deserved equalizer.
Our Under 19s went in search of another goal and on the 37th minute Goalscorer Danny Burns had a chance when he raced onto a long ball and hit a shot from inside the box but Jordan Roberts made a good save to keep the scores level and four minutes later Airdrie had the final chance of the half when Graeme Goodall hit a shot from about 25 yards out but Jordan Roberts again made the save to ensure the teams went into half time level despite an excellent first half performance by our Under 19s.
Airdrie picked up from where they left off and two minutes after the restart won a penalty after a handball inside the box and from it Tam Robertson took it however his kick was weak and Jordan Roberts guessed the correct way and made an easy save and three minutes later Chris Patrick had a chance when he hit a shot from about 25 yards out but the ball went high and wide. Then on the 52nd minute Raith had there first chance of the half when there player looked up and saw Airdrie goalkeeper Andrew Duncan was off the line and due to this he hit a shot from about 45 yards out and the ball went over Andrew and into the net to give Raith a 2-1 lead and a six minutes later they had a chance to extend this lead when they won a corner as from it the ball was crossed into the box and an unmarked player got onto the end of it with a header but the ball went over the bar.
Raith looked to have gained confidence from taking the lead and on the 62nd minute had a chance after intercepting a poor Steven McGinty pass and this led to a Raith player rounding Andrew Duncan and slotting the ball into the back of the net to give them a 3-1 lead. Our Under 19s were shocked to be behind and just like the majority of the season refused to give in and went in search of goals to get back into the game and on the 72nd minute had the next chance when they won a corner and from it Kyle Nicoll crossed the ball into the box and it went straight into the back of the net without anyone touching it to reduce Raith’s lead to just one goal. Then on the 78th minute Raith looked to be denied a stonewall penalty after Andrew Duncan brought there striker down and six minutes later things got worse for Raith as from inside the box Danny Burns fired a shot into the bottom corner of the net for his second goal of the game and to make it 3-3.
Our young diamonds then went in search of a winner and came agonizingly close on the 87th minute as from a Chris Patrick cross into the box Liam Watt got onto the end of it with a header but the ball went inches by the post and shortly after this Tam Robertson picked up a yellow card for a foul. There was still time left for Airdrie to have four more chances and the first three fell to Tam Robertson when he hit shots from inside the box, 20 yards out and the top of the box but they all were off target as they went wide, over and wide and shortly after this Danny Burns had the final chance of the game when he hit a shot from the top of the box but Jordan Roberts excellently tipped the ball over the bar and from the corner no danger was caused to ensure the game finished 3-3 after an excellent comeback by our Under 19s and which will also ensure our Under 19s finish in the top six for the second year running.
AIRDRIE: Andrew Duncan, Trialist, Graeme Goodall, Steven McGinty, Ryan McSherry, Liam Watt, Chris Patrick, Tam Robertson, Danny Burns, Andrew Gilchrist, Kyle Nicoll
Subs: Lee Donnelly, Ryan McCrone, Daniel Kerr