Ellon United’s visits to Canal Park in Banff are usually unprofitable so Saturday’s 2–0 win over Deveronside was all the more welcome and with it three important points.
Second half goals from David Coutts and Tito Silva did the damage taking United’s points tally to seven from their opening five games with all of them coming from games in which United failed to gather any last season.
Both sides tried to get the ball on the deck early on but with the grass on the long side and a lot of cuttings on the surface it was difficult to get into a strict passing game.
United opened positively without managing to threaten Patterson’s goal until the 13th minute through Dean McDonald’s strike which was too high.
Deveronside’s McLeay almost broke clear but Martin Crisp managed to cut out the danger at the cost of a corner. Callum Tremaine moved forward onto a telling pass from Coutts behind the home defence but unfortunately no one managed to get on the end of the dangerous cross.
The home side hit back with a shot across goal which flew wide and a low effort which was deflected behind for a corner but the biggest threat from the home side was from a number of free kicks they were awarded.
This gave them the chance to throw the ball into the danger area but the United defence held firm. Ellon finished the half strongly with McDonald firing wide and Aiden Greig meeting a cross from Tremaine only to find the side netting as the scoreline stayed blank at the interval.
Deveronside were at their most dangerous in the second half when United lost possession moving forward allowing the home team to break quickly and this was the case only eight minutes into the half when it took a great save from United keeper Warren Robertson to prevent them opening the scoring.
Four minutes later the home goal somehow stayed intact with United players queuing up in the goal area only to have their shots saved at close range or blocked.
Just on the hour mark United were carelessly caught on the counter-attack from one of their own throw-ins but Robertson’s fingertips did enough to turn the ball behind for a corner.
Ellon moved straight upfield from the clearance to force a corner of their own and when Craig Marshall’s second corner was cleared only back to the midfielder his measured cross was headed home by Coutts.
United made their first change with Tito Silva replacing Dean McDonald up front.
Deveronside’s Blackhall was deservedly cautioned for an obvious dive in the box but in the 71th minute the big striker was presented with a great chance to redeem himself from the spot.
This time he was brought down although the ball was heading away from goal and the penalty probably should have been avoided. United escaped when the striker blasted his spot-kick way over the bar.
Ellon’s second change saw Steven Benzie come on for Neil Erskine to bolster the midfield defensively alongside brother Kris.
The result was put to rest in the 89th minute. Matthew Tewnion pinged the ball up the left touchline with Aiden Greig outpacing his marker to reach it and fire in a low cross which took out the home defence and left Silva with a simple finish.
Ellon United: Robertson, Tremaine, Tewnion, Kris. Benzie, Coutts, Crisp, Johnson, Marshall, McDonald (Silva), Erskine (Steven Benzie), Greig, Cameron Clark, Blair, Wood.
Deveronside: Patterson, Aitken, Murdo, Legge, McKinnon, Milne, Thomson, McKay, Blackhall, Thompson, Philip, Watt, Blanchard, King, West, Kroboot.
United’s provisional league game at home to Banchory St Ternan scheduled for Saturday has now been confirmed as the Milton Park side’s Scottish Cup tie against East End finished with the Aberdeen side winning 2–1.
Having put in a such a good, balanced overall display at Banff the United management team will be looking for the same skill levels, determination and spirit from the side if they are to pick up more points. The match at the Meadows has a 2pm kick-off.