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Tuesday, 01 January 2013 13:32

Dundee comeback seals quarter final berth

Written by  Grenville Dawson
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Dundee Schools
North Of Scotland Schools
U15 SSFA National Trophy - Group 2
Millburn Academy, Inverness
DSC 0144 optAuthor: Grenville Dawson

Dundee went into their last game in the Lloyds TSB Scotland U15 National Trophy Group 2 knowing that a win would put them through to the quarterfinals, any other result would see them knocked out and Angus go through. North of Scotland had won both their matches and were guaranteed to finish first in the group, Dundee's two drawn games meant that, although they were likewise unbeaten, they had it all to do in the last game.

Dundee switched their home game up north but with the frost in Dingwall a concern all week the game was moved to Inverness. The 3G pitch at Millburn Academy was a bit frosty but otherwise fine in a rather chilly Inverness. However as snow started to fall at the start of the afternoon it was decided to bring the kick-off forward by 15 minutes.

Dundee started well and created a few chances which were off target or dealt with by the keeper. The North then showed how to finish as Ross Campbell broke the offside trap and raced through the centre to score, Dundee 0 North 1 (5m). The snow was still falling, gently but steadily, and all the players had to get used to the unusual circumstances fairly quickly as they chased the yellow ball around the white pitch.

Both sides fought hard for possession and as Dundee looked to get on level terms the North hit them with a sucker punch - Greg Morrison took the ball on the right and the big striker outpaced the defence to rifle the ball past Darren Clarkson, Dundee 0 North 2 (25m).

The Dundee heads did not go down and their efforts were rewarded just before the break. A Paul Callaghan free kick from 30 yards out was flicked on by Ryan Lamond and in a huge melee with the keeper well off his line the ball broke off a North defender and Jordan Hornby knocked the ball into the empty net from 10 yards out, Dundee 1 North 2 (38m).

Half Time: Dundee Schools 1-2 North of Scotland Schools

DSC 0239 optDuring the interval the lines were brushed clear as far as possible, but it was a thankless task as the flakes continued to fall. After a bright opening to the second half Dundee found themselves having to defend as North applied the pressure.

The Dundee defence coped well with the North attacks and there seemed little direct threat on the goal but the North pressure penned Dundee in their own half for a prolonged period. After withstanding the North pressure Dundee's chance came on the hour, the North keeper rushed into picking up a backpass near the edge of the box and getting a face full of snow for his troubles. The resulting indirect free kick was touched back by Liam Gibb to Sean Gallacher whose right-foot shot found the top corner for the equaliser, Dundee 2 North 2 (60m).

Dundee gained fresh impetus from the goal and started to turn the screw in search of the winner. Opportunities for the North were now very limited as Dundee pegged them back. The North keeper was still proving hard to beat though and time was beginning to run out. Dundee put all the substitutes on so that the fresh legs could replace those who had put in a good shift in difficult conditions.

With 90 seconds left Dundee won a corner on the left - throwing caution to the wind, even keeper Darren Clarkson came up for this one. Jordan Hornby's corner was floated right into the middle of the goal a few inches from the line where Alex Gibb rose above the keeper to nod the ball in and great celebrations ensued, Dundee 3 North 2 (78m).

In the last minute North won a corner on the left and the ball flew dangerously across the goalmouth but it was knocked past the far post and the last chance of the game had gone. The final whistle sounded to Dundee's relief, they had come from 2 down to win the game in the last minutes and earn themselves a place in the quarterfinals alongside the North.

Full Time: Dundee Schools 3-2 North of Scotland Schools
Last modified on Saturday, 03 August 2013 18:19
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