NEWS / Formartine United 5 Huntly 0

Formartine United 5 Huntly 0

Tuesday, February 18th, 2020

Formartine seem to have found themselves in a rich seam of good form: this stonking victory means that over the last two Saturdays they have secured 6 points out of 6, scoring 11 goals and conceding none in the process. Remarkably this has been achieved in the teeth of winter gales that in normal circumstances would have significantly hampered any attempts to play good football. United adapted to the conditions in the best possible way with a high tempo, keep the ball low, high pressing game conducted with an intensity that opponents were unable to survive.

A key part in all this has been the performance of two midfielders: Graeme Rodger who  has become so adept at getting ahead of the strikers that he is amassing a goal tally that takes him close to becoming the clubs highest ever scorer and Aaron Norris whose new found role as a deep lying playmaker suits him to the extent that he has been utterly dominant from box to box setting tempo and shaping attacks.

Huntly are no pushovers and have proved to have been the last straw that broke the camel's back for more than one of United's previous managers. Showing no apprehension whatever United went at it straight from the off with a push down the left from Lawrence to Greig who slipped the ball inside to Lisle who, breaking into the left side of the box was upended by Johnstone. The award of a goal kick infuriated some and mystified others.

It was clear early on that both Greig and Lisle had the legs on any or all of the Huntly defenders and were out to give them a roasting. United hammered away at Huntly who were largely pinned back in their own final third. Shots from Lisle, Greig and Gethins tested Farquhar but the penalty area was so densely populated that United had little space in which to move. A twenty five yard drive by Rodger smacked off the right upright but it took until the 26th minute for United to make their breakthrough.  After a series of corners centre back McKEOWN was still lurking in Huntly territory when Park whipped over a dipping right to left free kick from about 25 yards out when the big defender scattered defenders as he dived headlong to bullet the ball into the right corner of the net.

On track now, United tightened the screws with another, 7 minutes later, as LISLE burst through the middle outpaced and outmuscled Johnstone and Manson as he forced himself and the ball between them before skelping it firmly beyond the reach of Farquhar for the second.

Just on half time Rodger virtually replicated that goal as he too burst through the middle, split the centre backs and sunk the ball into the right hand corner.  The second half was generally messier as the wind continued to rise as the downpour  intensified along with United pressure on the visitors' rearguard. However there was little room for manoeuvre in there and shots from distance were at the mercy of the gale. United hammered away but the elements favoured the 9 or more Strathbogie men billeted there. However the older heads of strikers McGOWAN and Gethins found a way through by peeling off right and left respectively to draw defenders as the latter took a feed from Leyden and hammered it low left to right cross the goal face for the former to nick the ball in at the back stick.

Leyden who had replaced Greig in the 69th minute was rewarded for his constant torment of the Huntly defence when at some lick he, turned two defenders, cut inside another to find himself virtually on the goal line and turned back in to face and beat a fourth before off loading a ferocious drive that left Farquhar transfixed as the ball ripped into the net.


Formartine United: Main, Crawford, Lawrence, Norris (C.Anderson 80), McKeown, Kelly, Rodger, Lisle, Gethins, Park (McGowan 69), Greig (Leyden 69). Subs: Smith, Wood, Leyden, C.Anderson,  McGowan, S.Anderson, Sim.

Huntly: Farquhar, Jack, Johnstone, Murison (McKeown 75), Ross, Milne (Leslie 73), Booth, Meres, MacDonald, Manson, Hay (Dorrat 62). Subs: McKeown, Esslemont, Ballam, Leslie, Mathew, Storrier.