Shipyard frustrated by missed chances.
Due to injuries to Alan Clark, Blair Smart and Kevin Masson the Shippy drafted in two youngsters from the Shipyard U16 team, Scott Costello and Luke Thompson, to fill up the bench. The Management team decided on starting with a back three of Todd Arthur, Craig Lowe and Jamie Bouhaddou due to lack of defensive options with Pete Bell as a holding midfielder.
The Shipyard started the game strongly playing a good passing game as Kelso did not seem to want to cross the half way line and were content to soak pressure and created very little themselves. The first chance fell to Dale Robertson who won a header at the edge of the 6 yard box forcing keeper Elliot Turnbull into a good save. Then Brendan Napier tried two long range efforts which were both off target. Arthur followed up with another header from a free kick which just went over the bar. The Shipp were completely controlling the game and possession at this stage but almost fell behind when in their first break after 30 minutes Kelso almost scored but Sean Keatings saved a shot on the line followed up by a good save by goalkeeper Barry Thomson. Napier then picked up a soft booking by standing over the ball at a free kick for Kelso. JP McPhail was then clearly brought down from behind in the box but the claims for a penalty were ignored by the referee. The hosts continued to press and twice within five minutes Napier split the defence for Keatings to send over good crosses which should have been converted by Robertson and then McPhail. Bell and Bouhaddou had good shots saved by the keeper just before half time. All in all the Shipyard were well on top in the first half creating plenty chances and having the bulk of possession however with no goals to show for all pressure.
The Shipyard started the second half strongly again with the bulk of possession, however they went down to 10 men in the 53rd minute when Napier was sent off after receiving a second yellow card for a rash challenge on the Kelso player. The 10 men of the Shippy continued to press and Kelso also started to be a bit more adventurous as the game began to open out. The Shipyard should have been awarded another penalty when Robertson was pushed in the box as he was about to head into the goal and then a long range free kick effort from the Kelso defender narrowly went past the post. The home team took the lead with 15 minutes to go with a magnificent goal by substitute Andy MacDonald. He drove forward from the halfway line beating at least four defenders up to the left hand edge of the 18 yard box, cut inside and hit an absolute screamer into the roof of the net. Adam Doig then almost repeated this when he cut in from the right and his left foot shot smacked against the inside of the post and rebounded to safety. The game then descended into a series of petty squabbles all over the park which lead to a professional foul around 22 yards from the Shipyard goal. The Kelso defender hit a great shot low into the corner of the Shipyard net for the equaliser. There were no further chances in the final few minutes of the game as the teams had to settle for a share of the points
Alex could not hide his frustrations after the match when he said “I am very disappointed we only got a draw as we dominated possession for long spells in the game. We missed too many chances and were unlucky to not get at least two penalties. Our first half display was very good with no end product but all credit to Kelso as the second half was much more even, although for most of it we were playing with 10 men. Andy Macdonald’s goal was as good as any goal I have seen this season at the Shippy. Kelso are a decent bunch of lads and the hassles on the park in the 2nd half were forgotten about after the game and we are looking forward to playing them away from home later in the season.
Burntisland Shipyard: B. Thomson; T. Arthur; C. Lowe; J. Bouhaddou; P. Bell; S. Keatings; B. Napier; E. Henderson; E. Anderson; JP McPhail; D. Robertson. Subs: A. Doig; A. MacDonald L. Thompson & S. Costello.
Kelso United: E. Turnbull; B. Herdman; J. Logan; D. Bowie; D. McNulty; D. Boyne; E. Hutchison; R. Beveridge; J. Hopkinson; A. Oldham; L. Hill. Subs: W. Stewart; S. Bonnington; J. Ngoa; K. Blaikie.
Referee: C. McNob.