League, Glasgow Green
Pursuers 3 AC Milanda 2
Scorers - Grehan, Reid
Team - Mitchell, Di Folco, Evans (Fawns), O'Neill, Binnie, Galbraith (Harley), Grehan, McLaughlin, Reid, Allan, Macdonald. Subs not used: Dunlop, Preston.
This was like a re-run of an old move with the same horrible ending. Just as in the previous outing against Blantyre, Milanda lost a late goal and ended up with nothing from a game they could have won. And another depressing similarity was the loss of a key defender to injury, Gerry Evans this time having to go off in the first half with a cut above his left eye. Having said all of that, the stark truth is Milanda aren't doing enough to win games and are giving away far too many goals.
Ross Mitchell came in as trialist keeper for this one and looked a very safe pair of hands - he had no chance with any of the goals - but the players in front of him, and this ceretainly doesn't apply solely to the defenders, should be capable of providing better cover for whoever is between the sticks. There has been much debate about formations and tactics in recent weeks but the truth is if you don't work as hard as the opposition, consistently miss chances and leak goals you are not going to win matches.
Sadly, that has been the scenario so far in the GDSML campaign.
Milanda started well enough and went ahead after 15 minutes when David Galbraith's long throw was headed backwards into the net by Kevin Grehan. Pursuers were perhaps a bit unfortunate not to be given a penalty for a challenge by Evans but they were lucky in their own box minutes later when Marc Allan blasted a good chance over from close range following a Mark Reid corner.
Pursuers did draw level on the half-hour mark and it was a double blow because Evans picked up his injury in the build-up and had to go off, Craig Fawns taking his place. Just before the break, Milanda made another good opening which saw Allan round the keeper only to see his shot for goal blocked by a defender. Although it was all square at the break, Milanda looked like a team that were just waiting to lose and skipper Grehan had a rant, calling for more effort from everyone.
This brought a good reaction and Milanda looked the better team for much of the second half. But they couldn't get their noses in front and sloppy play over on the right allowed Pursuers to push on and score their second.
Milanda made a change shortly afterwards, bringing Roddy Macdonald back into midfield at the expense of Galbraith and pushing substitute Greig Harley up front alongside Allan. They got back on level terms frollowing a Fawns free-kick in the 68th minute. Reid did brilliantly to head the ball over one of the Pursuers defenders and rifle a shot past the keeper. They could have gone 3-2 up 10 minutes later when Allan put Grehan clear but the keeper did well to block his shot.
As the minutes ticked away, it looked as if Milanda had secured their first league point but possession was carelessly conceded in midfield and Pursuers broke to grab the winner.
So the losing streak stretches to four league games and it's clear Milanda have to improve or face a long, hard season.
MOM: Mark Reid put in a great shift on the left of the midfield and scored a terrific goal.