U20s v MotherwellSunday, 25th Aug 2013
U20 League v Motherwell; Thomas (2) 0-1, El Bakhtaoui (8) 1-1; Mercer (37) 2-1; Erwin (41) 2-2; Thomson (46) 3-2; Thomson (64 pen.) 4-2; Moore (77) 4-3
DUNFERMLINE 4 MOTHERWELL 3
It was a young U20s team that took on Motherwell at East End Park on Monday night. Trialist Robert Thomson continued upfront as the Pars kicked off but within 90 seconds Motherwell`s Dom THOMAS slipped the ball under Ryan Goodfellow to establish an early lead.
Dunfermline recovered from their bad start and pressurised Motherwell from then on. The reward came in eight minutes when good preparatory by Ryan Ferguson on the right set up EL BAKHTAOUI to hit the net hit to the right.
Lewis Martin`s header at the first of two corners in 18 minutes was deflected over the Motherwell bar. El Bakhtaoui fired another good effort on target midway through the half but keeper Ross Stewart recovered in time to smother the ball before Thomson raced in for the follow up.
Motherwell had a period of sustained pressure on the half hour. Two corners were defended and Goodfellow did well to thwart Dale Shirkie after Leitch and Thomas had combined well on the left. At the other end Stewart dived low to his right to hold a fine effort from Pars captain Declan O`Kane.
A storming run down the left by Scott MERCER resulted in the Pars taking a 37th minute lead. He evaded challenges to get inside the box and crash the ball beyond Stewart. 2-1
Unfortunately the Pars advantage was to last only four minutes. A defensive lapse at left back let Craig Moore skip on and his delivery into the penalty box was easily diverted past Goodfellow by Lee ERWIN for the equaliser. At half time a draw was probably a fair reflection of the first 45 minutes.
Half Time: Dunfermline 2 Motherwell 2
When pay resumed the Pars were switched on from the whistle and THOMSON ran through the centre of the Well defence to slip the ball past Stewart from 15 yards. It had taken just 23 seconds for the ball to hit the net. 3-2
The Pars forced a couple of corners on 54 minutes but the Steelmen defended well. Stewart had to pull off a really good save to deny El Bakhtaoui two minutes later after Thomson had risen high to head through a fine opportunity. Then another two minutes and another fantastic chance for the home side. This time Ryan Williamson won his way through on the right and his pass into the six yard box was tantalisingly close to Ferguson but no one got a touch.
On the hour Thomson`s shot was deflected for another corner and although Mercer`s delivery was yet again excellent, the defence cleared. Then in 64 minutes Danny McNulty whipped the legs away from Lewis Spence as he powered into the box. THOMSON stepped up and smashed the spot kick beyond Stewart. 4-2
Just two more minutes past before Mercer`s free kick from the left was headed on to the right goalpost by Thomson. In 67 minutes a Mercer corner from the right was headed on by Martin to Thomson whose effort sailed narrowly over the bar.
Chris Cadden had come on as the match entered its final quarter and he tested Goodfellow with a fierce shot from distance. The visitors did get their third goal of the evening however in 77 minutes when MOORE headed home from close in and it was 4-3.
Five minutes from time Leitch connected with a pass in from the right but thankfully Goodfellow was down fast at the near post to keep Motherwell out. The SPL outfit tried their hardest to get back level but the defence survived before in 89 minutes another Mercer corner was met by a powerful header from Scott Gray and Stewart had to turn the ball over his crossbar. There was one final chance of a shot on target from Motherwell`s Dale Shirkie in the third minute of added time but Goodfellow held and the points were Dunfermline`s.
John Potter`s Post Match CommentsDUNFERMLINE: Ryan Goodfellow, Ryan Williamson, Lewis Martin, James Washburn, Ross Drummond, Ryan Ferguson (Finn Graham 68), Declan O`Kane (c), Lewis Spence, Scott Mercer, Fayssal El Bakhtaoui (Scott Gray 80); Robert Thomson
SUBS NOT USED: Gavin Paterson, Jordan Orru, Cammy McClair, Cammy Gill (GK)
SCORERS: El Bakhtaoui (8), Mercer (37), Thomson (46, 64 pen.)
MOTHERWELL: Ross Stewart; Danny McNulty, Ross Kellock (Paul McCafferty 68), David Ferguson, Morgyn Neill, Jack Leith (c), Dom Thomas, Lee Erwin, Dale Shirkie, Craig Moore, Frazer Johnstone (Chris Cadden 68)
SUBS NOT USED: Liam Anderson, Stephen Higgins, Dylan Mackin.
SCORERS: Thomas (2), Erwin (41), Moore (77)
REFEREE: Gavin Ross
WEATHER: Fine 22°C
NEXT MATCH: SPFL U20 League (away) v Hearts
Tuesday 3rd September 2013, kick off 7.00pm
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