Amateurs have to fight for 3-2 victory

Northern United were the visitors last Saturday in a Scottish Cup tie which would prove a welcome break from the league struggle. Although the visitors play a division below Ellon, nothing could be taken for granted. Ellon started with some promise as Thomson again proved dangerous on the left wing, providing crosses which found no takers. The visitors won themselves a free kick but the attempted shot was blocked for a corner. After a near post stramash, Bell gave Northern the lead.

Ellon had a chance to level matters when McShea headed on to Longmuir 5 yards out but his flick was not strong enough. Northern were taking more of a grip on the game as Ellon struggled to find fluency. They threatened to double their lead when a quick break by McCrief provided Maclennan with a chance which Dickinson held well. But the visitors did not have to wait long for their second when Ridley went on a run down the Ellon right and crossed for Maclennan to finish from 18 yards out.

Dickinson had to look lively when a cross from Roberts looked like it would drop under the bar. Ellon tried to get back into the game, but had to settle for going into the break two down.

Ellon started the second period with more purpose after a talking-to from manager Willox. Within a minute they were back in it. Thomson played a great 50 yard ball to Longmuir in the opposition box, and he showed his experience by finishing neatly. Northern still had most of the game, and won a couple of corners. 15 minutes into the half Ellon made a change with Sutherland coming on for Taylor.

Dempster had to look to the defensive side of his game as the visitors threatened, and put in a great last ditch challenge on Bell to keep Ellon in it. Northern broke quickly, and McShea took a booking doing the right thing bringing down Goudie 20 yards out.

In 36 minutes Ellon drew level as a Thomson corner got the opposing defenders in a muddle at the front post: Dempster was on hand to poke the ball home for the equaliser. With 5 minutes left, Ellon’s never-say-die attitude proved fruitful as a clearance from Dickinson was flicked on by Hamilton to Longmuir, beat the onrushing keeper with a neat lob.

Ellon struggled for parts of this game and the visitors will feel aggrieved that they did not get a replay. That said, Ellon did not give up and a couple of great finishes by Longmuir proved that he is beginning to find his touch. Thomson again looked every bit a match winner as his regular forays down the left always looked dangerous. A great result for Ellon.