Ellon United’s season suffered another setback with a 3-1 defeat away to Hermes on Saturday.
Although the home side were strong favourites, United’s loss was largely self-inflicted. Hermes’ physical approach paid dividends on the day with Ellon unable to shackle Thomson.
United could not gain enough controlled possession to put their hosts under pressure and when they did try to knock the ball forward they did not trouble the home defence.
A Robin Dunbar save kept out Thomson in the seventh minute then five minutes later it looked certain that United would take the lead when for once they got in a telling ball. But Tito Silva stumbled as he went to meet Chris Craib’s cross and his header went tamely wide.
Hermes opened the scoring in the 16th minute when Thomson cashed in on United’s failure to clear their lines and nipped in to gain possession and cut inside before shooting home.
Ellon held out for the rest of the half with the score remaining 1 – 0 at the interval.
United leveled matters six minutes into the second half when Jason Coyle’s cross-cum-shot completely deceived keeper Sweeney to find the far corner.
Substitute Callum Tremaine’s header fell to Aidan Greig but he rushed his shot on the turn which flew well wide.
The missed opportunity proved crucial with Hermes regaining the lead within a minute. United should have been alert and caught Hermes well offside at a long through ball but naive defending played Close onside and he brushed aside his defender before rounding Dunbar and slotting home.
United made a further change in the 71st minute with Steven Benzie coming on for Greig but they were unable to change the pattern of the game.
Thomson rounded off the scoring for Hermes with a rasping long range shot in the 78th minute but he was given far too much time and space by the United midfield who were posted missing.
Ellon United: Dunbar, Tewnion, K Benzie, Craib, Millsom, Crisp, Wilson, Silva, Coyle, (Tremaine), Marshall, Greig (S Benzie), Blair, McDonald, Allsop.
Hermes: Sweeney, Cruickshank, Alexander, Brown, Strachan, Mackie, Macklin, McKenzie, Smith, Close, Thomson, Watson, Nash, McLauchlan, Stevenson.
United travel to Dufftown on Saturday for their first visit in a long time for a vital fixture in their quest to start picking up points after a difficult spell.