Glendale produced a magnificent team performance on Saturday as they ousted Echt from the North of Scotland cup at Maryculter in what was without doubt one of Glendale’s best results for many seasons.
Less than six months ago Echt defeated Glendale 5-2 in a Div 1N league game which all but sealed a deserved league title and promotion to the premier league where Echt currently proudly sit 2nd while at the same time it condemned Glendale through the trap door into the bottom tier of Amateur football . But on Saturday it was the team from the lower regions of Amateur football who came out on top.
Right from the off Glendale were cool, composed,competitive and in the end clinical as they bossed the tie through out. Even the loss of regular custodian Alex Henderson who was on holiday did not upset the team as new signing Davie Williamson was press ganged into doning the gloves and after a nervy start produced a sparkling performance inspired by his defenders in front of him.
The game could have been over inside the first twenty minutes if Glendale had taken the chances that came their way. In 5 minutes James McMahon, not for the last time during the game, left Mutch for dead on the left wing and raced in on goal his effort just sliding past the outside of the post. Next Lewis Brown burst down the left, where Glendale were enjoying lots of success, and his deft cross saw Mark Robb outjump the defence only for his header drift just wide. On 15 minutes however the goal that Glendale had threatend arrived. Robb layed off to Steven Middleton who combined with McMahon to set up MARK ROBB who remained calm to score past Mitchell. Middleton then brought out a good save from Mitchell with a shot from the edge of the box which forced the keeper to fling himself to his right to palm the ball over. Echt’s danger man MacAuley cut in from the left to have Echt’s first real shooting chance of the half but pulled his effort wide as Glendale continued to keep the” tractor boy’s” at bay the only disappointment from the first half being they had not turned their domination into goals. H.T 1-0
Echt re emerged having had a rollicking from their management but the central defensive partnership of Michael Thomson and Ryan McRae were no mood to buckle and were well supported by full backs Jamie Dryburgh and Craig McRae, the latter having his best game of the season, but it was no backs to the wall display as Glendale’s most experienced mid field four of Middleton, Russel MacPhee, Chris Riddoch and Brown winning the battle ,seldom missing a tackle and when the opportunity was afforded were able to get their heads up and play passes which forced Echt backwards. Echt’s frustration was evident as they made a triple substitution and Williamson had twice to look smart to deny Munro. Robb, whose bravery can never be questioned won a race to beat Mitchell to a through ball but his effort again drifted wide to the groans of the home support who were desperate for a second goal. They didn’t have to wait long as on 77 minutes Glendale scored to leave Echt with a mountain to climb. Riddoch broke up a move on the half way line and burst forward, played the ball wide to McMahon who took two defenders out of the game and laid the ball back for CHRIS RIDDOCH who bent a left foot shot past Mitchell into the bottom left corner of the net. Glendale’s players were now playing like they were 10 feet tall while Echt were broken, They went for broke by pushing Douglas up top but that only left huge holes at the back and you don’t give someone like James McMahon space like that as was proved on 87 minutes when JAMES McMAHON beat the offside trap to score and repeated the act on 90 minutes to secure a famous victory.
A great day for Glendale who were able to give some of their younger players, Michael Bruce and Ewan McRae in particular some minutes on the park to give them a taste of what it is like to claim a scalp of a big club. Fair play to Echt who accepted defeat in a manner which befits a such great club but without doubt this was Glendale’s day. Harsh to pick out individuals on such a day maybe but Williamson, Thomson, R McRae and McMahon were outstanding the rest were merely brilliant! But if their is one man who deserved this result more than anyone it has to be manager Simon Darwin. Almost a year since he took over he has had to witness some woeful performances from his team but through out it all his commitment, belief, and determination to bring Glendale back up the league’s has never waivered and if his players now follow his lead more results like this will follow.
|Steven Middleton||Yellow Card|