United slump 3-1 to Hall Russell

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ELLON UNited suffered a 3-1 defeat to Hall Ruseel United in their league meeting at Denmore last weekend, a win which took the home side to the top of the league. he visitors came off second best as Hall Russell’s pace and running power paid dividends as the home side lumped the ball forward at every opportunity on a horrible, hard, bumpy surface. The Ellon defence had to be fully alert to deal with the bombardment, only to be severely punished for three mistakes. Going forward, the visitors were too often guilty of wasting their final pass, preventing them from putting the home goal under enough pressure.

Ellon started brightly without managing to test keeper Simpson as the home side cleared their lines in a no-nonsense manner, with Hall Russell front men chasing down everything to keep the visitors’ defence under pressure. Ellon were forced into an early change when Chris Allsop had to be replaced by Calum Annand in the 20th minute.

Hall Russell snatched the lead four minutes later. The Ellon defence were forced to clear at the expense of a throw in, but when theball was crossed back low into the box, the second clearance fell to Erskine whose shot through a crowd of players landed in the net. Worse was to follow three minutes later when Euan Moffat misjudged a low shot from the Hall Russell striker to give him his second. Ellon moved forward from the restart and were awarded a free kick with Simpson holding onto Matty Edmond’s strike at the second attempt.

Five minutes into the second half, Keith Walker came on for Lenny Johnson. The visitors were seeing more of the possession, but could not find the vital, penetrating final pass. Chris Huggins replaced Chris Craib in Ellon’s final throw of the dice, but their frustrations continued as they were still unable to pressurise keeper Simpson, although Ross Forsyth was not far off target with a fine strike following a corner. The visitors frustration was certainly not helped by some of referee Javeed’s decisions, culminating in a farcical spell when Ellon’s Niall Corser was mysteriously shown a red card which was fortunately withdrawn by the official after all the confusion had died down.

Hall Russell’s Middler managed to put Ellon under threat all afternoon with his accurate corners and free kicks, and with the match running into stoppage time, Euan Moffat was unable to hold on to a high cross at the far past from the full back under pressure from the giant Hall Russell central defenders with substitute Dunn taking advantage to prod the ball home. Ellon responded well, and for once their passing was spot on as they carved through the home defence, with Ally Reid and Keith Walker combining to set up Ross Forsyth to score a well taken late consolation.

Ellon United: Moffat, Chapman, Allsop (Annand), Corser, Lawson, Clark, Johnson (Walker), Forsdyth, A Reid, Edmond, Craib (Huggins). Subs: Gunn, McKeitch, Chalmers, Irvine.

Hall Russell united: Simpson, Morgan, Middler, E Robertson, Mitchell, Innes, Russell, Whitfield, Erskine, McIntosh, Clunas. Subs: S Milne, B Milne, S Carroll, Rae, D Robertson, C Carroll.

Ellon United face another stiff challenge on Saturday when Banks o’ Dee are their visitors to The Meadows, KO 2pm. The winning numbers in United’s weekly Lucky Six Draw were 2, 3, 10, 14, 19 and 20 with Helen Day making the correct selection to win the £1000 jackpot. The jackpot for next week’s draw will be £1000 with the selection 6 from 20. Winners of the £10 consolation prizes were Squeak (New Deer) and David McKeitch.