John makes a huge start

Gem­mell dou­ble gives Lang cup win

Rutherglen Reformer - - Juniors - Mur­ray Spooner

Paul McColl hailed gi­ant striker John Gem­mell for his dou­ble which saw Cam­bus­lang Rangers ad­vance to the next round of the Cen­tral League Cup.

The Somervell Park side trav­elled to Wishaw at the week­end look­ing to fair a bit bet­ter than they did in a re­cent 2-1 league de­feat to the La­nark­shire men.

This time around it was the Lang who came out on top cour­tesy of two goals ei­ther side of half-time from new boy Gem­mell.

McColl was not only im­pressed with the goals he scored but with the 32-year-old’s over­all per­for­mance.

He said: “He scored a cou­ple of great goals. He even tried to score twice from 70 yards. The first one went just over the bar and I can’t re­mem­ber any­one try­ing to do that for a sec­ond time in a game.

“He’s a good player with great feet and he gets credit for the way he uses the ball. He’s tall and some folk will just tell you to lump it in the air for him but I say no, get it into his feet.”

McColl, with one eye on the league po­si­tion, de­cided to rest a few firstchoice play­ers and gave some of his fringe men a run out.

Jamie Macleod made his first start since De­cem­ber and the Lang gaffer also rested keeper Iain Ste­wart who made way for Jor­dan Brand. De­fend­ers Cal­lum Nolan and Robert Hal­l­i­day also dropped to the bench along­side striker Thomas Kil­martin who was re­placed with new sign­ing Jor­dan Mor­ton.

It was a brave move from the Lang

gaffer but one that paid off as his side strolled through the 90 min­utes.

The vis­i­tors took the lead af­ter 11 min­utes when Gem­mell pow­ered his header into the back of the net from a Mor­ton cross.

The new re­cruit skipped past the Wishaw de­fender and sent over the per­fect ball for the big striker who duly dis­patched past Thom­son in the Wishaw goal.

It was no more than the Lang de­served at this point but the hosts were al­most gifted an equaliser only min­utes later.

Brand pre­pared to clear a pass-back only for the ball to take a nasty bob­ble and bounce over the keeper’s boot. For­tu­nately for the vis­i­tors he got back to scram­ble clear.

Gem­mell then went close again, this time his pow­er­ful header was cleared off the line.

The vis­i­tors were un­lucky not to grab a sec­ond when Craig Hast­ings set up Dale Simeon but he saw his ef­fort rat­tle off the post be­fore bounc­ing clear.

Cam­bus­lang were dealt a blow when they were re­duced to 10 men. Hast­ings claimed for a free-kick which wasn’t given and said some­thing to the ref­eree who flashed him the red card.

How­ever, the Lang kept up the pace and never al­lowed Wishaw time to get into the half.

They al­most grabbed a sec­ond when a spec­u­la­tive ef­fort from Gem­mell, who was well inside his own half, fired a shot af­ter see­ing the Wishaw keeper off his line but the ball landed on the roof of the net.

It was more of the same for McColl and Co in the sec­ond half but they to work harder with 10 men.

The de­served sec­ond came for the vis­i­tors when Gem­mell cap­i­talised on a mis­take at the back to fire home.

Near the end, with Wishaw throw­ing ev­ery­thing at Cam­bus­lang, they man­aged to find a way through to goal but Brand pulled off a full- length save and pushed the ball away.

McColl said: “We just cut out the mis­takes – that was the dif­fer­ence.

“We played well and it was good to get a cou­ple of guys a game. Brand did well and had an ex­cel­lent save at the end.

“James Brown had an ex­cel­lent game, Jamie McLeod got a full game and our new sign­ing Jor­dan Mor­ton did well. He tired af­ter 50-60 min­utes but I was pleased with them all.”

Un­der pres­sure Dale Simeon is chal­lenged for the ball

Brace John Gem­mell takes the praise af­ter find­ing the net

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