Madrid Cup reaches semi final stages with the odd hail shower along the way

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This last week saw the group stages of the Madrid Cup come to a close with Spurs, Delting, Whalsay and Whitedale all progressing to Monday’s semi finals. The opening games of the Manson Cup were also held. On Friday night G&S Flooring Premierleague action comes back into the fixtures calendar after a few weeks without it.

Madrid Cup Group 1

Delting 2, Spurs 2

Leighton Flaws and Kevin Main scored for the home side. Spurs hit back through Alan Page and Connel Gresham to take first place in the group. Both teams were already through to the semi finals.

Ness United 6, Thistle 0

Ness got their first win of the season, goals coming from Erland Johnson (2), Declan Adamson and a Grant Redfern hat trick.

Group 2

Celtic 4, Whalsay 5

Two under strength teams provided a close and exciting match played in some of the worst weather conditions witnessed in many a season.

Celtic took the lead after 20 minutes when James Aitken scored a great free kick. Whalsay responded and equalised from the penalty spot, Ian Simpson scoring after Justin Watson had fouled Brian Irvine.

The final few minutes of the first half saw Martyn Stevenson put Whalsay ahead before Celtic were given the opportunity to equalise from the spot after Karl Williamson handled in the penalty area. James Aitken’s weakly taken penalty was easily saved by the Whalsay keeper.

Celtic started the second half strongly and were level 10 minutes in when Lowrie Simpson headed home a corner at the near post.

With that goal the heavens opened and the spectators ran for any available cover. As the hail came down it started raining goals. Whalsay raced into a 5-2 lead with goals from Ian Simpson and a Brian Irvine double.

Celtic then showed a lot of character to get back into the game with goals from Simpson and Aitken. Celtic pressed for an equaliser while Whalsay always looked dangerous on the break.

Whitedale 1, Scalloway 2

On a windy night at Strom, it was Scalloway who adapted to the conditions quicker than the home side and created some good early chances which brought out the best in Whitedale keeper Martin Young.

With around 30 minutes gone, Scalloway got the breakthrough when Grant Gilfillan tucked away his penalty kick after a Whitedale handball in the box.

The second half saw Whitedale press for the equaliser but the home side were finding Scalloway difficult to break down with Andrew Flett playing particularly well at the heart of Scalloway’s back four.

Whitedale eventually found the net through Richard Sinclair from close range but as they pressed for the winner they were finding Scalloway’s keeper Bryan Johnson in sizzling form, pulling off some fine athletic saves.

Late in the game Steve Umphray pounced on a slack pass in the home defence and fired home the winner from the edge of the box, giving his side a hard earned and well deserved victory.

Scalloway 1 v 6 Whitedale

With nothing at stake, this re-scheduled Madrid Cup group game saw Whitedale easily brush aside a below par Scalloway side. The home team contributed to their own downfall with an error-strewn first half.

Whitedale opened the scoring when Piotr Drosdowski found space to fire a shot into the corner of the net. A brief period of Scalloway pressure resulted in Whitedale doubling their advantage when they committed too many players forward for a corner and Jamie Wilson latched on to a clearance and placed the ball past the out rushing keeper.

Strong words in the home dressing room fell on deaf ears as poor communication in the back line resulted in Jamie Wilson placing the ball into unguarded net after picking up a poor clearance.

Scalloway did create a number of chances but were unable to hit the target and once again were caught out by a long clearance as Wilson completed his hat trick with an excellent lob.

An injury to Steven Umphray completed a miserable night for Scalloway and allowed Whitedale to dominate the remainder of the game. Scalloway almost pulled a goal back when Grant Gilfillan picked out Scott Henderson with an excellent pass but the striker’s effort was turned around the post by Martin Young. Henderson faired better from the resulting corner kick as he headed home Robert Garrick’s corner from close range.

Whitedale dominated the closing period of the game with Jamie Wilson capping a man of the match performance by adding two more goals to complete an impressive personal tally of five goals.

Manson Cup Group 1

Spurs 3, Delting 0

Connel Gresham and a Joe Leask double got the home side off to a flyer in Group 1.

Group 2

Celtic 4, Thistle 0

Celtic started their Manson Cup campaign with a comfortable victory against a spirited Thistle side at a wet and windy seafield on Monday evening.

Celtic took the lead when Lowrie Simpson continued his form in front of goal as he volleyed home at the near post from a Roy Wood knock down. Thistle’s cause was not helped when young Jack Clubb left the field injured with what turned out to be an ankle break.

Celtic should have doubled their lead from the penalty spot when Conor Regan was fouled. Gary Teale was booked for his protest before Regan stepped forward to take the penalty. Thistle keeper Scott Nicolson guessed correctly and saved well low down to his left.

With half time approaching it looked like Thistle had weathered the storm and would have the wind advantage trailing by only a goal. Simpson had other ideas as he scored a brilliant individual second goal. He beat both Teale brothers before calmly slotting home.

Thistle pressed hard in the second half and it took two timely blocks from Robert Smith as Thistle opened up the Celtic defence. Celtic secured victory with a fine individual goal from Roy Wood, as he beat a couple of defenders before firing home high into the net.

James Aitken added a fourth after being set up by Simpson and there was still time for Simpson to finish with a hatrick but he found the side netting after rounding the keeper.

Best for Celtic were Simpson and Wood while Stevie Michael and Nethan Watson battled hard for Thistle in midfield and young Scott Nicolson did well between the sticks in difficult conditions.

Whalsay 3, Ness Utd 0

With Whalsay’s injury list ever increasing and Ness travelling with only the neat 11, this game was far from a classic, played in wet and miserable conditions.

Whalsay did start brightly enough and took the lead with the first meaningful attack of the game, Alistair Johnson and Richard Williamson combining to play in Ian Simpson, who provided the deftest of touches to clip the ball past Erik Peterson and into the net.

After this Ness were kept for the most part on the back foot but to their credit chances were few and far between for the home side as the away side defended well.

A good chance did fall to Martyn Stevenson when the ball was played back to him on the edge of the box and his shot seemed goalbound but an inspired piece of goalkeeping from Peterson saw him get a hand to it and then scoop the ball off the line when the momentum from the initial effort appeared to be carrying the ball over it.

The reprieve was short lived, however, as Whalsay grabbed a second on the stroke of half time when some good build up play sent Alistair Johnson gunning down the line and his centred cross was met by James Shearer, who made no mistake with the finish.

The second half saw more of the same as Ness tried to sit back and defend while looking to take advantage of any breaks they could muster at the other end. For the most part Ness managed this, frustrating their hosts with some well organised defending and at one stage, from a short break up the pitch, a long range effort from Tomas Smith saw Stuart Manson in the Whalsay goal backpedalling to ensure the ball didn’t drop under his bar.

That was as close as Ness came as Whalsay dominated possession, although as in the first half, clear chances just weren’t coming. The introduction of youngster Grant Irvine almost paid off as he had an effort headed off the line from close range following a good move up the right.

The third goal did come eventually in the 85th minute and it was Gary Sandison, who broke clear down the left side and once inside the box smashed the ball into the top corner to give Whalsay the goal that their possession probably merited.


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