Recent inclement weather has meant that senior football is playing catch-up with league and knock-out competitions being juggled to allow the schedule of cup games to be met. The Manson Cup groups will reach their conclusion tonight with the remaining two fixtures in group two taking place. All four sides in action have various degrees of opportunity in reaching Monday’s semi-finals where group one qualifiers Celtic and Whalsay await. In the G&S Flooring Premier League Spurs and Delting secured three points apiece on Friday with wins away to Ness United and Scalloway respectively.
Ness United 1, Spurs 3
Spurs took to the field without the influential James Johnston and Connell Gresham and the home side were soon on top with some good interplay between Grant Redfern, Ian Bray and Erland Johnson.
Spurs were limited to counter attack football and Ness took a deserved lead when Johnson headed in a rebound off his own shot.
Ness looked in control but a slack pass was pounced on by Sam Ward and he rifled the ball into the bottom corner from 25 yards to equalise. This shook the home side but after five minutes they regained their control before half time.
The second half was an even affair but when Ward picked the ball up on the edge of the box and fired it into the bottom corner, this time with his left foot, the game pattern changed. Ness, now chasing the game, lacked the assuredness and passing they had before and threw extra bodies up as the game wore on.
With minutes left Josie Kay was left unmarked at the back post to pick his spot and seal the win for the Lerwick side and take the three points.
Scalloway 1, Delting 9
A comfortable win for Delting saw them easily dismantle a Scalloway side who are badly missing a number of key players.
The home team started well but once again shot themselves in the foot after 20 minutes when individual errors allowed Delting to rattle in a couple of goals. From that point on Scalloway lost confidence and shape, allowing Delting to take a five-goal lead with Robert Balfour and Ross MacDougal doing the damage.
Scalloway pulled a goal back on the stroke of half time when Gary Burns was felled and Robert Garrick converted from the spot.
In the second half Delting added a further four goals without reply in a very one-sided contest. Goal scorers for Delting were MacDougal (4), Balfour (3), Merv Jamieson and Leighton Flaws.
Whitedale 1, Scalloway 1
In recent games Scalloway have found that Strom Park can be a happy hunting ground and once again they went home with a well-earned point.
Whitedale started the brighter with some good possession and created some promising moves through Duncan Anderson and Paul Molloy, but the finish or the final ball was lacking.
Scalloway settled and began to ease Whitedale back into their own half and create a few problems for the home side. Scott Henderson was looking the main threat for Scalloway and it was from a Henderson corner that big Unst man Darren Thompson connected with a glancing header to the far corner of the net for the opener.
Whitedale responded quickly with an inch-perfect pass from Lorne McNiven through to Martin Clark, but with only the keeper to beat he fired his effort straight at Bryan Johnson in goal.
The second half continued in much the same pattern with Whitedale pressing but Scalloway dangerous on the break.
Midway through the half McNiven broke through the Scalloway defence only to be brought down in the box. Referee Derrick Bradley did not hesitate in pointing to the penalty spot and Molloy stepped up and struck the ball with power into the back of the net and set the stage for an exciting last 20 minutes.
Whitedale brought on another forward in Craig Nicolson and pushed Piotr Drozdowski and John Robert Burgess into midfield. This had a positive effect but despite creating some decent chances to win they were unable to get the breakthrough and the game ended in a draw.
Whitedale now have to travel to Delting knowing that anything less than a win will not be good enough to progress in the competition.
Ness United 0, Celtic 2
Ness started well with some good moves seeing chances for Grant Redfern and Thomas Smith while Celtic looked lively on the break.
Some nice passing football was being played by both young sides in an even contest and Jordan Simpson stung the hands of keeper Erik Peterson with a rasping drive while Paul Grant had to block a few chances at the other end.
The deadlock was broken through James Aitken when he poked in the rebound from a Lowrie Simpson shot.
Ness almost replied straight away through Declan Adamson but at half time the town team were still in front.
A tight game ensued in the second half but a scrappy goal finished by Ryan Grant made it difficult for Ness and Celtic held on for Victory.
Thistle 2, Whalsay 1
On a calm night at Gilbertson Park the Lerwick side got off to a much faster start.
Whalsay’s makeshift back line were being tested at every opportunity and after some good pressing high up the park Neil Laurenson found space to chip a through ball for Calvin Leask who finished neatly into the bottom right corner.
Thistle continued to press and were unlucky not to increase their lead. Keith Pearson picked up a booking for a late tackle on Laurenson outside the box.
As the half wore on Whalsay started to make an impression on the game. Ross Irvine and James Shearer created a few chances up front and the former equalised with a nice diving header to level before the interval.
In the second half both teams made some good attacking moves. Bryan Irvine looked dangerous with some strong runs down the right wing but some resolute defending ensured it came to nothing.
Thistle continued to press and came close twice. David Thomson was first denied by a fine Grant Thomson save and minutes later his free kick appeared to be handled by a defender in the wall. But strong penalty claims from the Thistle players and support were waved away by referee Robbie Leask.
The islanders nearly went ahead when another strong run from Bryan Irvine was followed by a cutback to Stuart Shearer who narrowly slid his shot past the far post. Debutant keeper Jake Constable then made a crucial save from James Shearer’s powerful free kick.
It was the Jags that emerged victorious when Leask grabbed the winner late on with his third goal in two games. There was an element of luck about his flicked volley as Thomson could only watch as it dropped perfectly into the far corner.
The town side will be very happy with their best performance of the season although Whalsay progress to the semi-finals due to goal difference.