Saturday, October 01, 2011

Season 2011/2012: Match 6: Montrose 2 Peterhead 1 (Irn-Bru Division Three)

Before I start this report, I should remind both of my readers that I am legally obliged under Article 7, Clause 2 of the SFL Reporting Act (August 2011) to refer to Peterhead as "Big-spending Peterhead" at least once in my article.

However, plans to add an additional sub-clause to the effect that I must also refer to them as "the high-flying Balmoor side" were shelved roughly two games into the season.

Because you can't always buy success in football. Especially if your idea of success is paying Rory McAllister £600 a week to play against the assorted brickies, plumbers and astronauts who populate Irn-Bru Division Three.

Montrose's random assortment of part-timers gave one of their best team performances of the season today, working hard for each other, tracking back diligently, pushing forward en mass and generally getting stuck in all over the pitch.

Today wasn't a performance marked by extraordinary individual turns - this was a collective effort, and a collective "fuck you" to those who had them written off before the season, and this match, kicked off.

Peeeeeeeeeeeeeeterheeeeeeeeeeeid actually took the lead in this match, and it was McAllister's close control and neat finish that put them ahead after 12 minutes.

Both sides had chances during the remainder of the first half, and if Peterhead had scored it would have been a long way back for Montrose.

But the home side didn't stumble and didn't panic. They just kept on playing, although there were too many instances of them resorting to route one football, which demonstrably doesn't suit their attackers.

The equaliser, when it came, was as a result of a strong run from Sean Pierce, a constant threat to the Peterhead backline. His square ball outfoxed all of the visiting defenders, but was perfectly weighted for Terry Masson to slam the ball home.

After the break, both sides sought a winner, but the match began to tilt in Montrose's favour. The winner, when it came, was again the result of Pierce's persistance, the youngster chasing down visiting goalkeeper Paul Jarvie. The keeper panicked, failed to bring the ball under control, and Pierce dinked the ball into Martin Boyle's path, leaving him to poke into the empty net.

Too often we've seen Montrose collapse after taking the lead, in fact it happened in their most recent home match against Annan. But today they stuck it out, kept the ball and kept Peterhead at bay.

A great result for Montrose, and one that could be a kickstart to their season. They're now on nine points, six off the play-offs, while Peterhead are only one ahead of East Stirlingshire at the foot of the table.

I don't care too much for money, 'cos money can't buy me love....

Man of the Match: This was a collective performance, and everyone played their part. Particularly good were Terry Masson, who gave a commanding performance in the middle of the park; Stephen McNally, playing wide right and a constant driving force; Jonathan Smart, managing not to get sent off and leading the back line in the way we've heard he is capable for the first time; and Martin Boyle, whose pace again could have been his opponents' undoing, but who should have had a hat-trick today. Even Kneeheid Cameron was a force for good today, proving particularly dangerous from set pieces. But overall, the most important player was Sean Pierce, creating both goals and generally giving a tireless performance that bamboozled Peterhead's defence.

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