Strathclyde University 1, AC Milanda 0
Team - Mitchell, Di Folco, McGowan (O’Neill), Evans, Binnie, Daly (Allan), Grehan, Trialist, Preston, Thomson (Harley), Reid.
Strathclyde’s students did the league double over Milanda with another narrow win. As in the 2-1 defeat at Greenfield, Milanda were unlucky to take nothing from the game, which was played in horrendous wind and rain. And that was despite having to operate with 10 men for almost the entire second half. Strangely, Scott Preston’s dismissal for two yellow-card offences - dissent and a poor challenge – didn’t have too great a bearing on proceedings, probably due to the conditions.
The teams very fairly evenly matched in both halves and the win went to the students thanks to an 18th-minute penalty.
Milanda had the wind mainly behind them in the first half and made most of the running. Their trialist attacker, operating behind lone striker Mark Reid, saw a lot of the ball but while the team buzzed around the Strathclyde box, few clear-cut chances were created. Kevin Grehan came close to scoring in the first half with a long-range shot that didn’t miss by a great deal.
Strathclyde took the lead against the run of the play from the penalty spot after Jim McGowan had fouled on the Strathclyde forwards. Milanda had a penalty claim of their own for hand ball rejected by the referee and this contributed to Preston’s booking for speaking out of turn.
It was all to play for in the second period but Preston lasted three minutes of it before being sent off for a bad tackle. But no heads went down and Milanda battled gamely for an equaliser.
Strathclyde were still a threat on the break but keeper Ross Mitchell kept the away team in it with a couple of superb saves.
Milanda’s best chance to level matters fell to Trialist near the end. Having got clean through the centre of Strathclyde’s defence, he looked certain to score but the keeper made a good save.
So Milanda reach the winter break rock bottom of the table and all we can hope for is a big improvement in the new year.
MOM: A much improved showing all round from the Invac debacle. Everyone worked hard, especially Gary Di Folco, Jim Binnie, Kevin Grehan, Trialist and Mark Reid. New boys Andy Daly and Andy Thomson also showed some nice touches and should be good acquisitions, while keeper Ross Mitchell was a safe pair of hands throughout. It was a close-run thing for this week’s accolade but skipper Grehan just shades it.