Rutherglen Glencairn Football Club


Cambuslang Rangers 2 Rutherglen Glencairn 1

Saturday 2nd September 2017 - West Region Super League Division 1

(Report by Peter Ferguson)

Cambuslang Rangers 1

Ryan McArdle probes for a first half opening.

The only way is up for Glencairn as their third defeat in three league matches so far this season has seen them slip to the bottom of the league table, this latest defeat being at the hands of local rivals Cambuslang Rangers at Somervell Park. It was a much improved performance from The Glens in comparison to the previous two league matches, but when you're struggling for results it seems like every little mistake is punished to the full, and that was the case as 'Lang showed the ruthless touch up front which Glencairn have yet to find this season.

Glencairn manager Willie Harvey didn't have his troubles to seek regarding team selection prior to kick off. Top goal scorer Gary Smith was unavailable for family reasons, and the engine in midfield of Sean McGuire was also absent due to holiday. To add to that, striker Alessandro Savarese was on holiday, and last season's top scorer Jay McKay had to pull out of the match during the warm-up after suffering a reaction to an injury sustained last week which had prevented him training in midweek. That meant there was a first start for Glencairn for striker Graham Boyd, and he was joined up front by Fraser Team, while Craig Young came into the midfield to replace McGuire. Rhys Donaldson was another fitness concern pre-match, but he passed the test and came into his usual place at sweeper.

After an even start to the game, the first moment of note came in the 4th minute when Young was caught by a very late challenge by 'Lang midfielder Jamie Hay in the centre of the pitch. Hay, who had been sent off in the previous derby match a few weeks ago, was shown an early yellow card.

The first "near thing" at either end arrived in the 7th minute as a lovely passing move by Glencairn ended with a cross from the right which flashed across the face of goal just too far in front of the sliding Boyd. Cambuslang's first attempt on goal came a minute later as Callum McRobbie turned inside and fired an angled shot well over the crossbar.

Boyd raced through on goal in the 11th minute and was brought down from behind on the edge of the penalty area by Chris Smith, the defender earning his side's second yellow card. Jamie Hamilton fired the free kick against the defensive wall (pictured below), and Tony Fraser volleyed the rebound well over the crossbar.

Cambuslang Rangers 3

'Lang no.1 Ian Stewart was clearly struggling with a knock and having trouble kicking, with defender John Gemmell taking the goal kicks instead. The Glens continued to threaten in the early stages and Boyd did well to dispossess Gemmell before passing to Stewart Hall who set up Team for a shot which he scuffed straight at Stewart from 18 yards.

Fraser became the first Glencairn player to see yellow for leaving a late challenge on Dale Simeon in the 15th minute. Jordan Morton went close for 'Lang moments later as he spun away from Hall and fired in a shot which flew a yard wide of goal.

Glencairn's positive start to the match continued, though, as Hamilton intercepted a pass out of defence and fired in a shot which Stewart did well to palm away. Moments later Hamilton's cross from the left was headed over the bar by Boyd from eight yards out when he probably should have at least hit the target.

When you're on top in a game, you have to make it count, and Glencairn failed to find a way to do that and paid the ultimate price in the 23rd minute. A diagonal ball over the top of the defence saw defender Craig McGregor let the ball bounce, which was enough invitation for McRobbie to nip in and flick the ball before being caught by McGregor's attempted clearance, and it was a clear cut penalty kick for Cambuslang. Callum McRobbie calmly fired past Jack Baker from the spot to put the home side 1-0 up.

You could see how much of a blow this was to the Glencairn players, and the tempo of their game dropped considerably as Cambuslang started to look a bit more comfortable in the game. Kris Gebbie's cross from the right in the 34th minute saw Simeon beat McGregor in the air at the back post, but his header back across goal dropped wide of the far post.

A similar move in the 42nd minute saw Gebbie pick out a trademark run from deep by Simeon, and this time he flicked the ball past Baker but found the angle too tight to squeeze the ball on target. A minute later John Henderson outpaced and outmuscled Andy Neil before flashing a shot across goal and wide of the far post.

The Glens went close to an equaliser in first half stoppage time as Ryan McArdle skipped into the penalty area on the left and cross just in front of Boyd, but Smith was on hand to hook the ball clear from in front of goal.

Half time : 1-0

Cambuslang Rangers 2

Glencairn pressurise the home goal early in the second half.

Both teams were unchanged at the interval, but Glencairn started the second half positively again, Hamilton unlocking the defence to release Boyd on the right edge of the penalty, but the big striker chose to try to set up Team instead of putting his laces through the ball.

The first substitution of the match arrived in the 51st minute as Cambuslang withdrew Chris Meikle and replaced him with striker Jordan Love. Hamilton was the man trying his best to create things for Glencairn, and he surged forward for 30 yards before linking with Boyd before being crowded out as he tried to latch on to the return pass.

Disaster struck for Glencairn in the 56th minute, though, as Cambuslang doubled their lead, and it was another cheap goal to give away, McArdle claimed he had impeded as he conceded possession, but play was allowed to continue as Love rolled the ball in front of Jordan Morton who had time and acres of space to place his shot past the helpless Baker.

Glencairn immediately changed things and Ryan Bennett replaced Team up front. The referee waved away penalty appeals by Cambuslang as Love turned Neil and went down in the 59th minute. Glencairn's second change in the 64th minute saw a straight swap in midfield as Njabulo Ndlovu replaced Young, and five minutes later 'Lang's second change saw Hal Bohme replace Henderson.

Simeon was the next player to see yellow as he prevented Glencairn taking a quick corner kick by holding on to the ball too long for the referee's liking, and he was joined in the referee's notebook shortly afterwards by Donaldson for a foul on the ever-dangerous Morton.

Del McNab replaced Hall on the right for Glencairn with fifteen minutes remaining, and The Glens' bench had now played all their cards. Love went close with a back post header for Cambuslang in the 78th minute after McRobbie had shown Neil a clean pair of heels.

The Glens gave themselves hope of a comeback as they pulled a goal back with ten minutes left to play. McArdle's cross from the left was headed back across goal by McNab and, as players lined up to apply the finish, it was Njabulo Ndlovu who volleyed into the net from close range.

Njabulo Ndlovu

Cambuslang immediately made their final change as former Glens striker Thomas Kilmartin replaced McRobbie up front. Glencairn pressed for an equaliser, and McNab fired an angled shot over the bar in the 82nd minute when perhaps a cross would have been the better option.

The pressure continued as Hamilton's shot was parried out by Stewart only as far as Boyd who set up Bennett for another on-target effort which was blocked by the resolute home defence.

Baker made his first proper save of the game in the 88th minute as he dived to block at the feet of Love after the ball had broken kindly for the striker. Cambuslang ran down the clock, and McGregor was next to be shown yellow in the 92nd minute after a delightful bit of skill by Morton was ended with a clear foul.

Glencairn kept going right to the end, and McNab's long throw in the 93rd minute was flicked on by Ndlovu, Boyd heading narrowly wide at the near post.

The referee surprised the Glencairn bench somewhat by blowing for full time after only three minutes of stoppage time, adding no time for several injuries and some time wasting. However, it was not to be for Glencairn, and the hard work of climbing the table starts now.

Willie Harvey was in an upbeat mood after the game, and he commented, "That's as good as we've played this season. There were a lot of positives to take from that performance. Don't get me wrong, the result is a huge disappointment for everybody connected to the club, but I was much happier today with that performance than I have been of late. Losing a few players before the match was a blow to our plans, but we just have to accept that's what we were dealt with and get on with it. We will roll up our sleeves and deal with where we are, and we will climb back up the table."

Cambuslang Rangers :- Stewart, Gebbie, Halsman, Smith, Meikle (Love), Hay, Henderson (Bohme), Simeon, Gemmell, McRobbie (Kilmartin), Morton. (Subs not used - Hewitt, Lawson.)

Rutherglen Glencairn :- Baker, McGregor, Neil, Young (Ndlovu), Donaldson, Fraser, Hall (McNab), Hamilton, Boyd, McArdle, Team (Bennett). (Subs not used - Grier, Dempsey, McAllister (gk).)

Man of the match - (chosen by Del Esplin) Jamie Hamilton.

Jamie Hamilton


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