Off-form Ellon’s survival bid stalls

Ellon Amateurs Ryan Sutherland misses a great chance against Rattray's X1.
Ellon Amateurs Ryan Sutherland misses a great chance against Rattray's X1.

ELLON AFC suffered a setback to their hopes of moving clear of the relegation zone when they lost 3-0 at home to Rattrays XI in a game from which they really needed three points.

Having escaped the bottom three for the first time since early in the season, it was an important fixture to win to put some daylight between Ellon and the relegation positions.

Rattrays started the stronger of the two teams with the experienced Freeland leading their line well and giving the home defence a real run around.

So it was no surprise when he turned his marker after seven minutes and crossed for Laing to head home with defender Sutherland badly positioned to make a challenge.

Worse was to come for the home side only two minutes later when Freeland again broke free of a static defence and was brought down by keeper Dickinson.

Lumsden stepped up to fire the penalty straight down the middle to double the away sides advantage.

Ellon had a great chance to get back into the game when Sutherland set off on a rampaging run from right back.

His eventual pass found Bain out wide and Sutherland kept his run going to meet the strikers cross at the back post but he put the ball past from five yards out.

It was with some relief for Ellon that Freeland picked up an injury to be replaced by Johnstone and the former Ellon player made an early impression by firing in a fierce free kick which Dickinson did well to hold.

Just before the half Ellon were presented with another chance as a poor header by Milne put Bain through on goal but he sent the ball over from no distance.

A goal then would really have perked the home side up for the second half.

Half time 0-2

Ellon appeared for the second half with their ears ringing from a well deserved dressing down from manager Booth at half time

But the game followed the same pattern as Edwards passed up a couple of great chances to seal the game for the visitors.

A deep cross by Dempster did find the head of Bain but once more it was not to be the strikers day and the chance was wasted.

Jim Booth introduced Buchan for Longmuir after 10 minutes of the half as they searched for a way back.Thomson set off on another trademark run and keeper Cameron did well to parry his effort and then Dempster fired the rebound over

It was then that the game was changed completely with an injury to Thomson.

A long delay in the game followed as medical treatment was required for the brave youngster.

Surely it would have been better to have called an end to the game but the referee could not do this under the laws of the association.

Eventually the game restarted but really the Ellon players minds were with their injured friend and the game became something of an anti-climax

Rattrays did add to their tally when Wilson was deemed to have handled in the box.

It was a very harsh decision which allowed Dunbar to step up and finish the match as a contest.

Finnie replaced Morrison for the last ten minutes but the game was well and truly over by this point.

Ellon were never at the races in this fixture which was strange given their good form in the last five games.

The match was marred by the injury to young Fraser Thomson with 20 minutes to go.

It was disappointing end to the flying winger’s season having been such an impressive player since he stepped up from Ellon Meadows Under 19’s and we all wish him a speedy recovery.