Club News

 

LEAGUE 1 PLAY=OFF FINAL 1st leg

FORFAR 2-1 PETERHEAD

by Glenn Moir

 

Peterhead will need to overturn a deficit to stay in League 1 after letting slip a first half lead at Forfar in the Play-off Final 1st leg.

Rory McAllister gave the Blue Toon the perfect start with an early goal but they lost control of the match when Michael McMullin was controverisally sent off five minutes after the interval.

The on loan Partick youngster went down under a challenge in the box but referee Stephen Finnie cautioned the defender for simulation and, having already been booked in the first period, was dismissed.

Forfar midfielder Martyn Fotheringham made Peterhead pay moments later by netting a stunning equaliser and then Michael Travis headed Gary Bollan's team in front with 15 minutes remaining.

The official's decision to send off McMullin was, without question, the turning point and it leaves Jim McInally's men with an uphill task on Saturday.

There were a couple of changes from the Blue Toon team that won comprehensively against Montrose, with the artificial surface in Angus dictating that SImon Ferry and Nicky RIley dropped down to the bench. In came Jamie Redman and Grant Anderson.

It did not take long for Peterhead to go in front. Three minutes in fact. McAllister with a close range finish after Forfar switched off at a corner. Jamie Stevenson delivered it and McAllister got to the ball ahead of his marker to sweep home a volley from just a few yards out.

Stevenson nearly put the visitors two goals up in the 10th minute with a well-taken 25 yard free-kick, which was curling into the top corner until Grant Adam clawed the ball to safety.

Another Stevenson corner caused mayhem in the Forfar box in the 15th minute and as the ball found its way to the back post, Chris McLaughlin was able to scramble clear just ahead of Grant Anderson, who was ready to prod in.

Forfar did conjure up a chance from a set-piece in the 20th minute, Danny Denholm sending in a free-kick for Thomas O'Brien, who could not direct his back post header on target.

Peterhead goalkeeper Graeme Smith had to pull off an excellent save to deny David Cox an equalising goal against his former club in the 36th minute. Cox swivelled and hit a left foot shot from the edge of the box but Smith dived to his left to keep the ball out.

It was a comfortable first half for the visitors but it all changed when they were reduced to 10 men five minutes into the second half after McMullin was harshly red carded.

After being cautioned in the first period for pulling back Cox, the 20 year old picked up a second yellow card for simulation after falling in the penalty area under pressure from Jamie Bain.  There appeared to be contact but the whistler was having none of it and gave McMullin his marching orders.

Forfar did not take long to cash in on their numerical advantage as Fotheringham smashed in a sublime leveller in the 54th minute. The Loons midfielder received a pass about 25 yards out and unleashed a superb strike past Smith and into the top corner.

It was a rearguard action from Peterhead afterwards as the hosts looked for a second.

Smith did well to turn behind an O'Brien drive but Forfar would not be denied in the 75th minute. O'Brien curled in a cross to the back post and Travis stooped to head home from six yards.

There were further chances for Forfar in the closing minutes as substitute Josh Peters volleyed over from a tight angle and then Cox drilled wide but Peterhead prevented further bleeding to stay in the tie.

 

 

Additional Info

  • Home Team Forfar 2
  • Away Team Peterhead 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Loss
  • Banner Sub Title Second half Loons comeback stuns Blue Toon

 

PETERHEAD 3-0 MONTROSE (4-1 aggregate win)
By Glenn Moir


A season of lows could yet end on a high after Peterhead dispatched Montrose to book their place in the League 1 play-off final.

Rory McAllister celebrated his 30th birthday with a couple of goals and then laid on another for Jordon Brown.

It was very straightforward in the end, but the do-or-die double-header against Forfar might not be, particularly with McAllister banned for the second leg.

The Balmoor talisman is facing a two-match suspension but lets look no further than Wednesday's match at Station Park.

It's ironic that Peterhead's first game of a long campaign was way back in mid July against Forfar in the League Cup and their last will also be against the Loons.

Jim McInally's men came out on top back then and if they do so again, they will escape demotion to Scotland's lowest tier.

Montrose never really looked like sending Peterhead down to be honest, despite a 1-1 draw in the first leg, although Matty Allan should have done better with an early chance that he screwed wide from a set-piece.

Once the Blue Toon went in front in the 34th minute, the hosts got better and the visitors worsened. Jamie Stevenson, who saw a header cleared off the line, delivered a corner and when the ball fell for Nicky Riley, he found McAllister, who buried an eight yard header into the net.

Stevenson should have made it two right at the start of the second half after McAllister squared from the left but the former Mallorca man smashed over the crossbar.

As the game progressed, Peterhead, who freshened up their line-up after the first leg, definitely had more energy than their weary opponents, who conceded a penalty in the 51st minute.

Allan upended Riley in the box and McAllister, as cool as you like, sent Allan Fleming the wrong way for his 25th goal of the season.

Frustration got the better of Montrose forward Matty Smith in the 69th minute. He foolishly lunged in on Riley near the touchline and got a card colour to match his jersey. Red.

The tie was over but the scoring wasn't as Brown netted for the second Balmoor match in a row.  The attacking midfielder peeled off at the back post to get on the end of a neat McAllister pick-out.

A job well done by the players but no pats on the back from the manager, who knows the salvation mission is only half done.

One Angus club dealt with. Another to go.

                         

                          G.SMITH
  REID STRACHAN GORDON MCMULLIN
STEVENSON S.BROWN FERRY J.BROWN
                 RILEY MCALLISTER

 

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 3
  • Away Team Montrose 0
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title Montrose beaten as Blue Toon set up Forfar fixture

 

MONTROSE 1-1 PETERHEAD

By Glenn Moir

 

Peterhead will be content with their night's work after a hard-fought draw in the first leg of their League 1 play-off semi final against Montrose at Links Park.

In front of a very healthy attendance of 1251, Ryan Strachan gave the Blue Toon an early lead with a spectacular goal from distance, although it was quickly cancelled out by Chris Templeman.

The outcome was fair though and it leaves the tie very finely poised for the return match at Balmoor on Saturday.

Following their dramatic comeback win over Alloa, which saved them from automatic relegation, Peterhead made just one change from last weekend's starting line-up with Grant Anderson taking the place of Leighton McIntosh.

Jim McInally's men carved out a half chance in the fourth minute when Craig Reid clipped a ball forward for Anderson. The former Raith winger acrobatically sent an effort towards goal and in doing so, collided with home goalkeeper Allan Fleming, as the Gable Endies defence cleared the danger.

But Strachan made the breakthrough with a superb long range strike in the 10th minute. There appeared to be absolutely no danger when Montrose defender Cammy Ballantyne cleared the ball upfield. It landed at Strachan's feet about 10 yards inside the home half and he thundered a shot in off the upright for a simply stunning goal.

Montrose nearly hit back immediately when Liam Callaghan stood up a free-kick to the far post for Matty Allan, whose downward header was clawed by Graeme Smith.

However, the hosts were level in the 15th minute and it was a well-taken effort by Templeman. The giant striker showed neat skill to jink past Strachan in the box and slot a low shot into the net.

By no means was this a cagey affair as Peterhead broke forward again, this time Anderson dragging a left foot drive just past the post.

The Blue Toon did have the ball in the net in the 33rd minute when Jordon Brown forced in the rebound after McAllister's free-kick was spilled by Allan Fleming but the far side assistant referee flagged for offside.

Graeme Smith pulled off a fine save just before half time to stop Montrose going in front. Templeman's knockdown fell invitingly for Graham Webster, whose powerfully struck shot was turned behind for a corner by the outstretched Smith.

The big keeper was called upon moments after the interval to keep out Gary Fraser's near post effort.

Just before the hour mark, Smith made a crucial stop to thwart Fraser again. The effective Templeman slotted the ball through for Matty Smith and as the winger homed in on goal, Fraser nipped in ahead of him to take the shot but Smith stood firm to made a great block.

Montrose were determined to try and take a lead into the Aberdeenshire fixture and they nearly went in front in the 65th minute when Callaghan swung in a corner, which was glanced by Paul Watson but there were enough visiting bodies on the line to make the clearance.

Peterhead were not sitting back either and after they replaced Anderson and Jordon Brown with Nicky Riley and McIntosh, McAllister tested Fleming with a low angled shot from inside the penalty area, which the keeper had to watch closely.

With nine minutes remaining, McIntosh nodded wide at the far post and then there was a glorious chance for McAllister in stoppage time as he bore in on goal but Fleming made a key save.

For a finisher of McAllister's calibre, it was a big opportunity squandered, although the draw still gives the Blue Toon a very realistic chance of progressing to face either Forfar or Annan.

It's all to play for going into Saturday.

 

PETERHEAD

                 G.Snith

  Reid Strachan Ross Noble

         S.Brown Redman

Stevenson J.Brown Anderson

                McAllister

 

 

 

 

 

 

Additional Info

  • Home Team Montrose 1
  • Away Team Peterhead 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Draw
  • Banner Sub Title Strachan's stunner cancelled out by Templeman goal at Links Park

 

PETERHEAD 3-2 ALLOA
By Glenn Moir


R for Redemption rather than Relegation?

It's possible after a plucky Peterhead fightback, which saw Jim McInally's team defeat Alloa and narrowly escape the automatic drop from League 1.

The Blue Toon had to better the result of Stenhousemuir to clamber off bottom spot.

Credit to the players for digging deep to come from behind on two occasions and get the win they required. Stenny, on the other hand, could not beat Brechin.

This was never going to be straightforward. It was a bumpy rollercoaster ride but it was worth it in the end.

Yes, Alloa did not bother playing their shining lights Greig Spence and Jordan Kirkpatrick, with their promotion play-off just around the corner, but they still made life very tough for Peterhead.

Twice they took the lead, with their opener coming in the 29th minute. Steven Hetherington's drive from outside the box was well-saved by the diving Graeme Smith and Iain Flannigan was on hand to tap in the rebound.

The Blue Toon nearly got back level five minutes before half time when Rory McAllister's free-kick was pushed out by Craig McDowall but Jamie Redman could not direct his follow-up effort on target.

However, McAllister led a rally from the hosts in the second period and he came up with the equaliser in the 53rd minute. Jim Goodwin's men failed to deal with Jamie Stevenson's long throw and McAllister smashed a 12 yard shot into the net.

When Alloa re-took the lead six minutes later through Adam Martin's close range finish from a Flannigan assist, Peterhead had it all to do, particularly with Stenny drawing level at Ochilview.

They needed two goals and they duly delivered.

Grant Anderson, moments after coming on as a substitute, found space at the far post to slot past McDowall in the 68th minute and then with nine minutes remaining, Jordon Brown provided the decisive moment.

It came from a free-kick that never was, but McDowall should have done an awful lot better.

The visiting goalkeeper made heavy weather of dealing with Stevenson's set-piece from 25 yards and Brown bundled in the rebound.

Then there was almost the ultimate sting from the Wasps with seconds left.

Martin turned his marker in the box but Smith, who made a fine return to the team, pulled off a great stop to effectively save Peterhead from relegation and set up a play-off semi final against Montrose.

Deep breaths...until Wednesday.


                         G.Smith
          Reid Ross Strachan Noble
Stevenson S.Brown J.Brown Redman
               McIntosh McAllister

 

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 3
  • Away Team Alloa 2
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title Win over Alloa relegates Stenny and sets up Montrose play-off

LIVINGSTON 4-1 PETERHEAD

 

Peterhead's dreadful season hit a new low at Livingston. Literally.

A heavy defeat in West Lothian saw the Blue Toon sink to the foot of League 1, beneath Stenhousemuir, who beat Queen's Park.

It all means Jim McInally's men have just one game left to try and save themselves from demotion to Scottish football's bottom tier.

But their fate is out of their own hands because even if they manage a win over Alloa next week, it will not be enough to avoid the drop should Stenny see off Brechin.

What a mess.

The optimists would have said this was an ideal time to face Livi - already champions, seemingly little to play for, the trophy to come post-match and bubbly to crack open.

The contest was truly done and dusted by half time though.

David Hopkin's team raced into a three goal interval lead and the Blue Toon were never coming back from that.

Liam Buchanan, on the shortlist for the League 1 Player of the Year award, had the hosts ahead in the 12th minute with a close range finish.

Raffaele De Vita then laid on Scott Pitman, who doubled Livi's lead in the 21st minute to give Peterhead a mountain to climb.

The points were in the bag by the break, Josh Mullin adding a third for the champions in the 42nd minute with a shot from outside the box.

At least Peterhead's hardcore band of supporters had something to cheer just after the hour mark when Jamie Redman found the bottom corner with a fine effort.

It was a merely a consolation strike, with Livingston's Danny Mullen, another contender for the league's top player prize, completing the scoring with a rising shot with nine minutes remaining.

So it's on to next week.

A Peterhead win, coupled with a Stenhousemuir draw or defeat, is required...just to make the relegation play-offs.

 

Additional Info

  • Home Team Livingston 4
  • Away Team Peterhead 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Loss
  • Banner Sub Title Relegation fears increase with just one game remaining

PETERHEAD 0-1 STENHOUSEMUIR
By Glenn Moir


If Peterhead surrender their League 1 status at the end of the season then a key reason will be their wretched results against bottom of the table Stenhousemuir.

They have taken just one point off the Warriors from their four battles, their latest a disappointing and potentially crucial 1-0 defeat at Balmoor.

The solitary goal, which was a deflected 10th minute effort, was in keeping with the rest of the game - very untidy.

Post-match, Blue Toon boss Jim McInally spoke of his frustration at losing to a team that offered nothing.

Mind you, Stenny were never going to go hammer and tongs, particularly after their early opener. It was a perfect game plan for them. Score, sit in, restrict the space and frustrate.

Sadly, Peterhead could not come up with the answers.

The home team started well enough and Scott Brown forced Graham Bowman into a smart save before Simon Ferry drove a shot just over the crossbar.

But after falling behind, they faded and never really looked as though they could turn things around.

On loan Hibs rookie Oliver Shaw took aim from outside the box. His shot, aided by a big deflection off Craig Reid, wrong-footed Fraser Hobday and the ball nestled into the net.

The teenager's enthusiasm was evident and he nearly scored again as half time approached with a shot from the right side of the penalty area, which flew wide.

Prior to that chance, Rory McAllister, isolated for much of the match, failed to hit the target with a 12 yard shot after Aaron Comrie's shot-come-cross fell into the path of the striker.

It was only when the hosts brought on their three substitutes in the second period that an urgency was shown.

One of the replacements, Jordon Brown, saw a sidefooted effort clawed away by Bowman and another, Allan Smith, did his best to unsettle the Stenny defence with his pace and movement.

But by no means were the visitors hanging on and they safely saw the match out to crank up the pressure on Peterhead and cut the gap to just a couple of points with two games remaining.

A home defeat lessened the need to look out for the result of eighth-placed Stranraer. But, for anyone interested, they played out a goalless draw at Brechin.


                          HOBDAY
    COMRIE STRACHAN ROSS REID
        S.BROWN FERRY REDMAN
ANDERSON McALLISTER STEVENSON

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 0
  • Away Team Stenhousemuir 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Loss
  • Banner Sub Title Teenager Shaw's deflected winner cuts the gap to two points
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