Match Report: Carloway 0 – 1 Westside

At Cnoc a’ Choilich, Carloway.

Friday, 12th April, 2019, 18.30.

West Side came out on top on the opening fixture of the 2019 season following a late scrambled winner from Ali “Barvas” Macleod. Leagues aren’t won or lost on the opening day of the season, as we found out in 2017, but West Side’s celebrations on scoring the winning showed the importance attached to this derby. Billy Anderson’s team worked hard for him in his first game in charge and there were plenty positives to take forward.

Both teams fielded strong and familiar line-ups with Domhnall Mackay (suspended), Stuart “Bubble” Macdonald (injured) and Davie Beaton (unavailable) missing from the Carloway squad and only Duncan Shirkie making his debut having moved south in the close season. “DI” Maclennan started alongside young Shirkie and Murdo “Squegg” Macleod in central midfield with Cameron “Tiger” Macarthur alongside Duncan’s brother Euan Shirkie at centre-back and Andy “Bernera” Morrison at right back. Fraser Macleod, back living on the island, spearheading the attack.

The first half started slowly with both teams taking a while to find their flow. West Side pushed on towards half-time and only two good saves from the evergreen Gordon Craigie in the Carloway goals kept the scores even at the interval. Carloway found it hard to get hold of the ball with Murdo “Squegg” picking up a booking after half an hour as frustrations grew.

Carloway regrouped after the interval and showed increased purpose in attack. The first chance fell to Neil Sinclair in the six-yard box, but he couldn’t get a clear shoot away. Billy Anderson switched things around after an hour with Dan Crossley making a welcome return in midfield, replacing Andy “Bernera” Morrison, with “DI” Maclennan moving back to defence. The changes nearly paid off after 67 mins when the ball was won in midfield and Murdo “Squegg” hit a raking pass to release Neil Sinclair on the right-hand side. Neil’s lob over David “Lurch” Murray looked a certain goal until Duncan Maclean appeared from nowhere to clear it off the line. His clearance ran straight to Callum “Beag” Mackay whose close-range strike was turned round the post by a recovering “Lurch”.

This near miss seemed to spur West Side into action with three chances being created in the next ten minutes. Firstly, Martainn Shields’ right-footed drive was turned round the post by Craigie followed by a strong left-footed drive from Sam Mackay which flew just wide. It was Sam’s brother Luke Mackay who came closest however when he hit the post following a one-on-one with Craigie.

Carloway reacted again by looking to the bench with Kenny “Dokus” MacDonald replacing Neil Sinclair with ten minutes left on the clock. Kenny nearly made an immediate impact, but his shot was straight at “Lurch”. Dan Crossley and Fraser Macleod then both picked up bookings as the tension increased. Shortly after, Joe Armstrong broke up the left-hand side and hit a great cross in, but Fraser couldn’t get enough on it and his header flew wide.

Ninety minutes came and went, and it looked like a point apiece. However, in the ninety third minute, Martainn Shields broke free on the left-hand side of the box and his chip across goal resulted in Ali “Barvas” Macleod knocking the ball home from close range. There was barely a minute left and the three points went back up the road to Barvas.

So, a tightly contested game and a sore loss in the end for Carloway. Billy Anderson will be pleased with the effort and the increased goal threat in the second half. With players to come back in and Dan Crossley and Kenny “Dokus” still to gain full fitness, there is plenty to look to look forward to and it should be an exciting season.

Man of the match (Carloway): Euan Shirkie

Man of the match (West Side): Duncan Maclean

Line-ups:

CARLOWAY: 4-5-1.

            

 Gordon Craigie

Andy “Bernera” Morrison   Cameron “Tiger” Macarthur   Euan Shirkie   Joe Armstrong

Donald “D.I.” Maclennan,

Callum “Beag” Mackay, Murdo “Squegg” Macleod (capt.), Duncan Shirkie, Neil Sinclair

               Fraser “Fraz” Macleod 

 

Subs. used: Dan Crossley (Andy “Bernera” Morrison) 62 ¦; Kenny “Dokus” MacDonald (Neil Sinclair) 82.

Subs. not used: Andrew “Lanky” Macdonald; Chris “Christy” Smith; Domhnall Graham.

Yellow cards: Murdo “Squegg” Macleod 33; Dan Crossley 83; Fraser “Fraz” Macleod 83.

Manager: Billy Anderson.

Asst. Manager: Iain Angus “Gus” Maciver.

 

Westside: 3-5-2.

 

   David “Lurch” Murray

Johnny Wallace   Duncan Maclean (capt.)   Gordon Campbell

Martainn Shields   Sam Mackay   Rob Shirkie   Ali “Bones” Macleod   Ali “Barvas” Macleod

Alex John Morrison   Luke Mackay

 

Subs. used: Calum Vann (Johnny Wallace) 61; Johnny Macleay (Ali “Bones” Macleod) 73.

Subs. not used: Campbell Macdonald;

Yellow cards: none.

Manager: Roy Shirkie.

Asst. Manager: Colin George Morrison.