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Cleland cruise into final with win over Rossvale Milan

Rossvale Milan 3

Orr 5', Grimes 69', Buchanan 75'

Cleland BC 9

Cornes 3', Phairs 9', 35', 44', 48, Rooney 39', 63', Moore 46', Allan 70', Watson 77'
  • Saturday, 27 February 2016
  • Milton Sports Club
  • Under 15´s
  • Janice Morton Memorial Cup
Cleland BC are through to the final of the Janice Morton Memorial Cup after firing ten goals past Rossvale Milan on a beautiful sunny day at the Milton Sports Club. Four goals from Connor Phairs was the icing on the cake of what was a remarkable team performance. 
The first few minutes of the game were a frantic, end-to-end affair, with Dillon Cooper hitting the post for Rossvale and Dominic Small forcing a save from keeper Mark Dickson at the other end for Cleland, all in the first two minutes.
The scoring was opened in the third minute for Cleland with a delightful goal from Dean Cornes.  With two defenders on his tail, the striker kept the ball in the air from a long pass with two touches before volleying in to the back of the net from the edge of the box.  
Rossvale, however, hit back immediately – Patrick Buchanan firing an overhead cross on to the head of the Milan number ten Alan Orr.
Connor Phairs then fired Cleland back in to the lead with a strike in to the bottom corner, making it 2-1 after just nine minutes.
The match decidedly calmed down after the first ten minutes, giving everyone in the crowd time to catch their breath. The game settled in to a steady rhythm, with Rossvale generating some good build-up play in the middle of the park. Cleland favoured a more direct approach, keeping the Rossvale defence on their toes, with centre-back Derek Walker playing particularly well to keep Cleland at bay. Mention must also go to Rossvale full-back Greg Powell for clearing a header off the line to save his team.
Cleland then went on to score the next two goals, setting up a comfortable 4-1 lead before the break. Goal machine Phairs found space on the right after a ball was splayed from the middle of the park and comfortably slotted the ball in to the bottom corner.
The fourth came from a great pass from Cornes, gliding a pass to his teammate Aidan Rooney to put the ball away.
  • Half Time:
  • Rossvale Milan
  • 1-4
  • Cleland BC
After a half-time break, Cleland came roaring out of the gates, putting the tie to bed in ten minutes with three goals. With Rossvale losing Walker after the break, Louie Mitchel Grimes, who had been one of their most creative players by that point, was shifted in to central defence, and they gradually lost control of the middle of the park.
Greg Taylor set up Phairs for his hat-trick as he blasted in to the top corner in the 44th minute. Phairs was on a delightful run down the wing only minutes later, hitting the post with his strike before Jack Moore slotted in the rebound. Phairs put his fourth goal of the day away with aplomb – a delightful curling strike from outside the box. Eight minutes of madness ended up putting the game beyond doubt for Rossvale Milan.
For brief periods of the game, Rossvale kept the ball on the ground and showed that they had players of quality, with midfielder Cameron McGregor in particular looking comfortable on the ball and sparking moments of good play from the hosts. Cleland were impressive at the back though, keeping themselves organised and stifling the space that the hosts could use.
Their defence was the bedrock of their strong performance, allowing them to keep control of the game and spark swift attacks down the flanks. An example of this came with their next goal, with the team winning possession back to send an attack down the left, setting Aidan Rooney with a simple finish for his second goal.
With just over ten minutes to play Rossvale United pulled a goal back from a corner, with Cian Cameron pulling the ball back from the far post for Grimes to tap in from close range – a goal he deserved, having put in a strong performance for his team.
However, this brief moment of joy for Rossvale was short lived, with Cleland substitute Lewis Allan scoring within seconds of the restart with an absurd chip from the flank. The winger could have scored another within seconds, after beating three defenders only to have his shot saved from the left.
Rossvale got their third with five minutes to go from another corner, with Kyle Simeone delivering a great ball in to the far post for no.7 Buchanan to head into the net.
Cleland had not had enough and still had time to take their score in to double figures, with Reece Watson winning and then converting a penalty in the final minutes for his team and breaking this websites goal tally.
In the end a confident win for Cleland, who were tight and well-organised at the back and stylish and clinical when going up front, and will be a team to fear in the final. Rossvale will undoubtedly be disappointed with the result, and will perhaps feel that if they managed to keep the ball on the ground just a bit more then the score might not have looked so comprehensive as it eventually turned out to be.
  • Full Time:
  • Rossvale Milan
  • 3-10
  • Cleland BC


Rossvale Milan
Cleland BC
1. Mark Dickson
2. Greg Powell
3. Andrew Beattie
4. Derek Walker
5. Keiron McGrory
6. Cameron McGregor
7. Patric Buchanan
8. Louie Mitchel Grimes
9. Kyle Simeone
10. Alan Orr
11. Dillon Cooper
12. Lewis Kerr
13. David Stewart
15. Cian Cameron
16. David Cooper
18. Laurie Hood
1. Craig Harvie
2. Declan Bell
3. Ryan McGrath
4. Anthony Taylor
5. David Fagan
6. Jack Moore
7. Reece Watson
8. Jamie McNab
9. Dominic Small
10. Aidan Melvin
11. Ciaran Shaw
12. Connor Phairs
14. Dean Cornes
15. Marc Cutler
16. Taylor Moon
18. Lewis Allan
19. Aiden Rooney
20. Greg Taylor
Star Player
Rossvale Milan
Cleland BC
Cameron McGregor. The midfielder looked calm and comfortable on the ball throughout, keeping his composure and was integral to many of the positive pieces of play that Rossvale produced. The number 6 was particularly good at finding the space between the lines and finding his teammates to create chances. A special mention also for Louie Mitchel Grimes, who bought a creative spark to the midfield when on the ball. His admirable move to defence after the substitution of Walker made a visible impact on his team, and he deserved his goal right at the end.
Connor Phairs. It is difficult to argue against a player who scores four goals. Clinical in front of goal, if anything he could have scored more, hitting the post on at least one occasion. A constant threat to the opposition defence, Phairs was the figurehead of some outrageous attacking play from the front three of Cleland. It is clear that the attackers have a great understanding between each other, and Phair's awareness and vision in particular left the opposition defence bamboozled.
Magic Moment
Rossvale Milan
Cleland BC
Buchanan's assist for Orr's header in the opening stages of the game was outrageous - hitting the ball behind him on the volley over his head. Did he mean it? Only he will know, but it befuddled both players and audience alike, looking spectacular and proving effective.
A variety of moments to pick from for the away side, with the opening goal from Cornes being this writer's highlight: juggling the ball around the Rossvale defenders before rifling it in to the net. Special mention must go to Lewis Allan's strike from the wing, which provoked an audible gasp from the crowd. But this writer must confess that I was still writing up Rossvale's second goal when it was scored, such was the speed of the attack. It was agreed by all those who saw it, however, that it was a 'belter.'
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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