Point win Acres cup (Friday 5th May 2017)

By | 10 May

Alexander Macdonald from Aird scored the only goal of the game as the Reds won the Acres Boys Club Cup for a record 8th time. The Rudhachs hadn’t won the cup since 2002 and had to work very hard and play well to edge past Westside 1 0 at Goathill Park.

If you saw any photos of the game you would be forgiven for thinking it was played in perfect conditions with a cloudless sky and spectators wearing shades. In reality it was freezing cold, with a nasty Easterly breeze whipping across the pitch. As the teams stepped out for the national anthems however, the crowd were eagerly anticipating another classic East v West and Red v Blue battle.

Into the first half and both teams were vying for midfield supremacy in a cagey opening ten minutes. As usual  the lads had been told not to give away any silly free kicks as Duncan Maclean for the Blues is a set piece expert….. So the Reds duly gave away about 3 corners and 2 free kicks for Duncan to swing in viciously! Not good for the nerves of the fans although the defence and Gordie Mackenzie in goal coped well.

After about 15 minutes Wally Maciver did well to win a corner and subsequently delivered a peach of a cross from which Elliot Ruddal’s header was cleared off the line. So close. Both teams were looking dangerous from corners and free kicks and Scott Graham of the Westside had a couple of very good headed chances but both missed the target. Westside were having a good spell and young hotshot Luke Mackay was next to try his luck but Gordie came out well and Luke’s shot drifted wide of the post.

One of the problems the Rudhach defence was having was the sun in their eyes when trying to head away goal kicks and clearances. The good news was Westside would have the same problem in the second half.  After about half an hour Andrew Morrison was pulled back giving Wally a chance from a free kick. The Reds hit man took aim and fired a cracker which rattled the crossbar with the Westside keeper David ‘Lurch’ Macleod well beaten.  Soon after the Reds right back Angus Macdonald did well to make space for himself but didn’t connect well with his shot and the keeper gathered comfortably. Not long after Referee Maclean blew the whistle for half time and the fans headed for a warming cuppa.

Into the second half and Elliot almost scored an unbelievable goal. Good build up play down the right ended with Andrew Murray switching the play to the Reds defender. Elliot took one look and hammered the ball towards the top corner from 35 yards, only to see ‘Lurch’ fling himself to his right and tip the ball over the bar; Goathill applauded as one for both the shot and the save. Elliot had another chance from a corner but ‘Lurch’ blocked with his knee. The game was opening up and Innes Iain from Westside was taken down by Daniel Macleod as he raced away down the right. From the resultant free kick Gordie flung himself to his right to palm away Innes Iain’s rocket shot-brilliant stuff!

Back up the other end and once more ‘Lurch’ denied the Reds with a great save when Wally’s classy curler  was tipped sensationally round the post. Something was going to give soon and it was the Rudhachs who struck, Alexander controlling Andrew Murray’s pass on the spin before poking the ball into the corner. You beauty. There was still 20 minutes left of the game but the first goal in a final is always important.

Westside threw men forward looking for an equaliser although the Reds looked dangerous, with Andrew Morrison in particular playing well and giving the Blues defenders a torrid time. In the final ten minutes Luke Mackay flashed a header wide and Innes Iain’s shot went narrowly wide as West almost equalised. At the other end Andrew Morrison almost capped a fine performance with a deserved goal but once again ‘Lurch’ performed heroics. Soon after the ref blew for full time and the Reds had their hands on the silverware.

Captain Alasdair Gillies then led the team forward to hold aloft the cup with Wally MacIver winning the Man of the Match award.

Team: Gordie Mackenzie, Angus Macdonald, Elliot Rudall, Ali Gillies, Daniel Macleod, Rob Jones, Andrew Murray, Ally ‘Wally’ Maciver, Andrew Macmillan, Andrew Morrison, Alexander Macdonald. Subs Andrew Mackay (for Alexander), Matthew Campbell (for Andrew Mac), Iain Mackenzie, Donald ‘Spike’ Smith, Martyn Lightbody.