Team Pd GD Pt
1 Ayr Utd 34 49 73
2 Raith Rovers 34 33 71
3 Arbroath 34 20 56
4 Alloa Athletic 34 12 56
5 Stranraer 34 -6 50
6 East Fife 34 -16 42
7 Airdrieonians 34 -11 41
8 Forfar Athletic 34 -26 34
9 Albion Rovers 34 -22 27
10 Queen's Park 34 -33 27
Updated: 14th Apr
Tuesday March 13th 2018

Forfar Athletic 2 – 1 Raith Rovers


Midweek Reverse in Forfar
In the week that Ken Dodd died your intrepid reporter remembered on the way north that some of our fellow fans had seen the comedy legend play Dunfermline last year. He apparently took them to extra time… Those same fans and others will have been looking for something to tickle them after the disappointing result in Ayr.

Arriving on a clear, calm evening with only the slightest breeze, the plastic pitch was clear of the snow still visible in patches to all on the drive to Angus. Just before kick off a group of geese honked noisily by overhead. The Rovers line up saw McHattie, Barr and Zanatta go to the bench with Davidson, Spence and Buchanan coming in. Ex-Rover Scott McBride was on the bench for the Loons.

Forfar had the first effort from outside the box before Spence’s characteristic enthusiasm closed down a defender and the Raith man was unlucky to not win a corner. Another longer range effort from the home side preceded a free kick into the Raith box that was defended and a quick break broke down in the final third.

The first real chance fell to Aitken who got onto a good ball into a channel and his angled shot went across Lennox and past the far post. Then Buchanan and Spence combined well with Greig’s driven cross blocked away.

In the thirteenth minute Lennox mishit a pass to Hilson who was polite enough to fire his shot straight back at the big keeper. The game by now was settling with both sides trying to gain the upper hand, Furtado was being watched closely by both Bain the right back and Mackintosh the right midfielder. The Rovers midfield was (when not in possession) looking like they were sitting a little deeper than they could be. Regan Hendry was showing some good touches and control in the middle of the park and Murray looking to get forward.

Thomson broke well overlapping and his centre was hit first time by Spence on the volley just inside the box. The rising effort fizzed up and over the bar. Buchanan then received the ball in the box and turned well winning a corner that was followed soon after by a free kick neither of which were taken advantage of. Willis swapped sides soon after with Vaughan who was perhaps surprisingly given less close attention on the Forfar right.

Midway through the half Travis, the Forfar captain, rolled a wayward pass back to keeper McCallum who had to scamper across to knock it away from just inside the post. Much to the relief of the big stopper and the home fans… Moments later the big skipper got on the end of a free kick at the other end heading wide.

Regan made a good run through the middle and Thomson’s cross was too strong for those arriving in the box. The Rovers were on top and Vaughan and Murray combined well with a near post driven cross forcing McCallum to take the difficult ball under pressure. A run from Vaughan was stopped by a foul but advantage played before he was fouled again seconds later. Lewis curled in the free kick towards the near top corner and McCallum just managed to prevent it hitting the net.

The referee was given no option when Bain the right back fouled Vaughan again moments later and was unsurprisingly booked. In the 36th minute the Rovers fans on the terracing side thought the ball was in when Murray rose heading a cross hard and just past with the keeper no-where. The last action of the half from a free kick saw a Forfar man follow up an initial header to hit the net but the linesman’s flag was up.

At the half the visiting fans seemed of the view that more of the same would see the Rovers take the points.

The Rovers pushed on first and Spence survived a late, late foul that wasn’t spotted before Buchanan was penalised for handling a ball hit only a couple of feet from him. Liam was booked for dissent. More play failed to see a shot from the Rovers. Forfar seemed not be keen to have the Rovers continue as they had finished the half and a short corner from them led to a shot wide from outside the box.

Around the hour Spence and Buchanan were withdrawn with Barr and Zanatta coming on, Vaughan and Furtado moving up top. There was a shout for something as the ball went in the Raith box and from the resulting corner a Forfar header hit another home man and went over. As the home side pushed on a scramble in the Rovers box fell kindly and was cleared. Matthews was booked before a short pass found a home man one on one and Lennox did very, very well to take the ball at his feet.

Another ball in saw a header ruled out by a linesman’s flag as the home side seemed happier to have a go at goal than the Rovers. At the other end Bain the booked number 2 was penalised for a foul on Zanatta which must have been his last chance. Lennox however had to be alert again taking the ball well a second time from a striker’s feet in a move that saw Davidson booked for a foul in the build up.

Forfar took the lead when a high ball into the box saw Lennox come to claim it. He didn’t get full possession and the ball fell to a home man – Matthew Aitken – who poked it home. 1-0

The next action saw McCallum fail to claim a Rovers corner in similar fashion but without the ball ending up in the net this time. A Hendry shot didn’t threaten before another Forfar corner was scrambled away. The next chance fell to Forfar and frankly it was good move with slick passing carving open the Rovers and the final ball across left Matthew Aitken with the simple task in the six yard box of doubling the lead. 2-0

Suddenly enlivened, the Rovers won a corner and Furtado’s second ball in saw Lewis Vaughan turn and drive the ball home at the far post. 2-1

Jonny Court came on for Matthews and within a minute he was booked for his second foul. The Rovers efforts to get back into the game were being hampered by fouls that broke up the flow and gave the home side the chance to put the ball into dangerous areas… The Loons had another half chance before Munro was booked for a foul on Court.

The last incident of note saw Zanatta do well wide but his great ball across was away before anyone could take advantage. Easton was replaced by Hurst before the final whistle brought proceedings to an end.

This game was taxing for the travelling Rovers support however the season like a famously long Ken Dodd performance ain’t over till the toothy guy with the tickling sticks sings. There’s still a way to go yet.


0
Welcome to Station Park for tonight's rearranged fixture, Forfar v Raith. Davidson returns and Hendry makes another start
0
Forfar get the game underway
1
Millar makes the first attempt on the Raith goal
3
Buchanan tries to flick it on to Furtado but Willis can't quite get it under control
4
Forfar's Dingwall tries for a low shot but Lennox can comfortably collect
7
Thomson clears the danger
8
Willis loses the ball and Forfar pick it up and Forfar have a pop and it's just short
10
Hendry with the long ball up to Spence but Fofar there to mop up and clear
11
Whyte tries to chip the ball into the box but it deflects off thomson's back and Lennox can gather
12
Lennox with a poor pass to Thomson and Hilson intercepts. Lennox has to react quickly and get down to save
14
Forfar with the free kick into the box and Davidson heads clear
14
Thomson picks up the ball takes it for a run drops it on the edge of the box to Spence who takes a shot but volleys it over the bar
16
Vaughan gets the ball to Buchanan into the box who can't turn ball goes out for a corner to Raith
18
Hendry to Buchanan the latters pass to Thomson is a bit soft
19
Free kick to Raith after a Forfar hand ball deep in Forfar half
19
Vaughan drops it into the box but no one can pick it up.
23
Thomson with the throw up the line. Willis pushes it on and Buchanan tries to break through but loses out
24
Corner Raith
25
Vaughan's corner is too heavy
26
Forfar Free kick deep in Raith half
26
Easton gets it into the box but again heavy and ball goes out for goalkick
27
Murray throw in to Buchanan who get it to Vaughan but his pass falls to a Forfar player and they clear
31
Forfar try to push their way through but defence hold strong and lennox able to pick the ball up
32
Forfars free kick is long doesnt trouble raith defence or lennox who picks it up
33
Raith freekick after Vaughan is brought down kustvon edge of box near far corner
34
Vaughan with a blistering shot and keeper has to make a save bal falls out for a corner
35
Bain is booked after Vaughan is again brought down
36
Vaughan gets the ball into the box and Raith close to scoring after Murray gets up for the header
37
Willis with the throw in deep in Forfar half. Thomson picks it up but ref judges him to have fouled a Forfar plater
40
Spence turns about 30 yards out and tries for goal but his effort is wide
42
Been an even half so far
42
Forfar free kick
43
Forfar goal
43
No goal actually Forfar player judged offside
45
Freekick Forfar again deep in Raith half
45
Freekick falls to front post area but it's eventually cleared
45
45+1 half time Forfar 0 Raith 0. An even first half so far
45
Crowd is 509
45
Buchanan gets the second half underway
46
Forfar have come out all guns blazing. Forfar corner
49
Bene goes in for the tackle and Forfar throw in
50
Buchanan booked
52
Raith trying to make the break through
52
Thomson tries the long ball to Spence but Forfar head clear
53
Buchanan picks the ball up runs up the line. Tries to chip the ball into the box but it hits the side netting
54
Bene's clearance goes out for a Forfar corner
54
Short corner ball eventually hits the Raith side netting
55
Forfar get tge5 ball into the box but Davidson dives to head clear
57
Thomson gets the ball up to Buchana butvthe latters pass is weak
58
Raith double sub: off Spence on Zanatta off Buchanan on Barr
59
Forfar corner
59
Ball is placed in the box meets a Forfar head and ball goes out for a goalkick
60
Raith struggling to clear the ball
61
Zannatta tries to drive the ball forward but is timely tackled by forfar
62
Ref chatting with Forfar manager
63
Oooh Forfar close. Ball runs free in the box Forfar pounce and Lennox comes out and gets down to gather
63
Bain gets the ball deep into the box it meetsva Forfar head who has a pop but he's blown for offside
65
Vaughan's free kick floats into the box straight to the keeper
65
Again...forfar one on one with Lennox. Lennox makes a great timely save as he comes out and gathers the bal from the feet of Forfar player
68
Goal Forfar
68
Ball is crossed into the box. Lennox drops it and Aitken pounced from 6 yards and slots it home
70
Raith corner
72
Again ball gets played into the box but Raith fail to pick up. Final third letting Raith down
74
Forfar corner and ball is dropped into the box. Ball is kicked out for a goalkick
75
Goal Forfar
75
Forfar drive through ball passed to Aitken how slots it home for Forfar
77
GOAL!
77
Vaughan with his right foot into near post
81
Forfar free kick sees Matthews clearing the ball for a Forfar corner
81
Easton tries for a shot and ball goes kust over the bar
82
Raith sub off Matthews on Court
84
Court booked
85
Free-kick Forfar deep in Raith half
85
Easton gets the ball into the box but it bounces out for a goalkick
86
Thomson struggles to control the ball and loses the ball in Forfar box
89
Zannatta cuts the ball back in the box but No one there
89
Willis has come back to defend
91
Forfar sub off Easton on Hurst
91
Davidson with the long ball into the box but keeper collects
93
Forfar throw in deep into Raith half
93
Fulltime. Forfar 2 Raith 1
93
Forfar stronger side second half. Raith again failing to finish in final third and not putting chances away
Forfar Athletic
McCallum, Bain, Whyte, Munro, Travis, Millar, McIntosh, Dingwall, Hilson, Easton, Aitken.
Subs: Adam, Peters, MacIver, Hurst, Allan, McNaughton, Starkey.

Raith Rovers
Lennox, Thomson, Murray, Benedictus, Spence, Buchanan, Vaughan, Matthews, Davidson, Hendry, Furtado.
Subs: Smith, McHattie, Barr, Court, McKay, Zanatta, Watson.

 

Barry spoke to RaithTV after the defeat to Forfar

After the entire SPFL League card was wiped out by the snow when the original fixture was scheduled on 3rd March, and again last Tuesday; it’s third time lucky as Raith Rovers head to Station Park tomorrow evening, to take on Jim Weir’s improving Forfar Athletic team.

After taking over a Loons side which was marooned at the bottom of the league in October, the former Elgin boss has helped steer them out of the drop zone, and into eighth place, two points clear of Albion Rovers, and three ahead of bottom side Queen’s Park.

The two sides have met three times this season, with Rovers taking seven of the nine points on offer.

Mark Millar gave the away side the lead at Stark’s Park back in August, but goals from Lewis Vaughan, Liam Buchanan and Greig Spence turned the game around as Rovers won their second home fixture of the campaign.

It was a different story at Station Park in October, when John Heron gave Raith a second-half lead, only for Mark Millar to rescue a point for the Angus side from the penalty spot.

Rovers returned to winning ways the last time the two met though, with goals from Greig Spence and an own goal from enough in a tight 2-1 win, with Josh Peters grabbing Forfar’s effort.

Raith have six wins and three draws from the last ten meetings, with their solitary defeat coming in a Challenge Cup tie at Station Park last season.

Tuesday’s match referee will be Mike Roncone.

Head-to-Head League Record at Forfar:

Forfar Wins: 15 | Raith Rovers Wins: 11 | Draws: 10

Forfar Goals: 62 | Raith Rovers Goals: 51

Current Form:

Forfar Athletic: W-L-L-W-D-L

Raith Rovers: W-W-W-D-D-L

Top Goal Scorers:

Forfar Athletic: Mark Millar 8 | Matthew Aitken 5

Raith Rovers: Lewis Vaughan 20 | Greig Spence 13 | Liam Buchanan 12

Match Odds:

Forfar Athletic: 10/3 | Raith Rovers: 4/5 | Draw: 14/5