Six of the best as Ar­ran end the year on a high

The Arran Banner - - Sport -

Ar­ran foot­ballers fin­ished 2018 on a high note with an im­pres­sive six goal rout of Gal­ston in their last game of the year, af­ter a re­spectable start to am­a­teur foot­ball on the main­land.

Gal­ston were well or­gan­ised to start with but with the at­tack­ing op­tions avail­able to Ar­ran it was only a mat­ter of time be­fore the in-form duo of Archie McNi­col and Johnny Sloss put Ar­ran 3-0 up and Grant Adam­son brought out a great save from the Gal­ston keeper just be­fore half time. Archie very nearly had an early hat-trick but per­haps the watch­ing eyes of dad Bill, who had trav­elled to watch the game, un­set­tled him some­what.

Wil­liam Sil­lars re­turned from his three-match ban and with him­self and Sam Tat­ters­field the two cen­tre halves, the ball was passed out with ease. Sean Hig­gins and Corey Al­lan put in a hard shift up and down the flanks and a formidable mid­field trio of Nick Em­s­ley, Ryan Arm­strong and Don­ald Park meant it was a test­ing day for the home side.

Archie made it 4-0 shortly af­ter the break and Joel Small came off the bench to score two head­ers.

Sloss was again on the end of some hatchet man be­hav­iour and man­ager Alan Mur­ray de­cided to take him off to keep him in­tact for the big games next year.

Mur­ray him­self made his player/man­ager de­but for Ar­ran, re­plac­ing the hard work­ing Park and also Andy Thom­son – re­turn­ing back to fit­ness – came on for a good 20 minute work­out.

The re­sult now sees Ar­ran top the league with 22 points from 10 games, al­beit other close ri­val teams have games in hand, but they have cer­tainly proved a few main­land doubters wrong so far. They will re­turn to ac­tion at the end of Jan­uary as they aim to keep the pres­sure on their near­est ri­vals.

Alan said: ‘On be­half of Mar­tin Ross and my­self we would like to thank the play­ers for their ded­i­ca­tion so far and also for all of the off-field help we have re- ceived from in­di­vid­u­als and busi­nesses, the sup­port we get at games, home and away, has also been amaz­ing.’

On Satur­day De­cem­ber 15 there will be a Isle of Ar­ran AFC fundrais­ing disco/ raf­fle at Brod­ick Golf Club with tick­ets priced at £10 from the club shop.

Pho­to­graphs: Tam Bor­land.

Ar­ran pose for a team pho­to­graph prior to the game.

Johnny Sloss pow­ers to­wards the goal.

Ar­ran re­main on top of the league af­ter 10 games.

Team man­ager Alan Mur­ray came on as a sub­sti­tute.

Pho­tos: Tam Bor­land

The Gal­ston keeper is kept alert with re­peated at­tempts at goal.

The Ar­ran lineup for the game against Gal­ston.

Play­ers look on anx­iously as the Gal­ston keeper dives to pre­vent a goal.

A Gal­ston at­tempt at goal is blocked by keeper David Heenan.

Wil­liam Sil­lars and an op­po­si­tion player mir­ror each other in a bat­tle for pos­ses­sion.

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