Angus-based side Carnoustie Panmure, nicknamed ‘The Gowfers’ (after Golf – a very popular sport in those parts) had what many would describe as a good season. Despite not winning silverware the U/17 side gave a good account of themselves, showing pride in their free scoring attacking football. In fact, despite just missing out on the league title, they were the highest scoring team in the league with an impressive 49 goals in just 14 games.
They should also be acknowledged for getting into the J Cord Cup Final (their second final in the last two seasons), once again only narrowly losing by virtue of a miraculous comeback by the opposition. This report will look at how the team faired throughout the season, taking a look at some key results, and turning points in the season.
*All statistics come from the Carnoustie Panmure Club website, and their club twitter feed.
AUGUST – OCTOBER
Carnoustie’s U/17s were eager to begin their campaign in the Bodycare Complimentary League. On opening day, they displayed their fierce attacking prowess with a comfortable win against Dryburgh, beating them 7-0, with star striker Edmonds bagging a hat trick.
Their second game saw the Angus side come up against Forfar West End away from home. Despite going 2-0 up after only six minutes, they struggled to keep their lead, in an entertaining match full of goals, flying tackles, and drama that ended 5-5.
As September began, the matches kept on coming. They drew with title favourites Brechin in a closely fought match, and once again showed their attacking prowess against St Andrews Colts, banging in six away from home.
It was in this month, that Carnoustie began their Scottish Cup campaign, knocking out league compatriots Dryburgh in Round One. The league season continued in October, and this month was perhaps one to forget, as the U/17 side recorded two hard defeats against Partain Craig 3-2, and Monifieth Athletic at home 6-3.
These two games were to become significant come the end of the season, however despite this, the team carried on, keen to not let their morale drop too much.
NOVEMBER – FEBRUARY
Carnoustie showed great desire, with a win over Montrose, to get back onto form, having dropped off the top spots from the previous month. However they did once again face defeat against St Andrews Colts in the Henry Dolan Cup, in what was a very closely fought cup tie, ending 3-2.
It was the time off the month were games had to be rescheduled due to the fierce and unforgiving Scottish winter, with the league tie against Dundee United SC being postponed several times all the way up until midway through December. The wait was however worthwhile, recording another League win, with a 2-0 result, just before the Christmas season break.
The players returned from festivities by beating a very strong Brechin side in the J Cord Cup thanks to goals from Vincent Edmonds, and Brandon Black. This was followed by another win in the league against Dundee United SC in front of the home support at Carlogie Park.
February began poorly, but finished strongly, with the team getting humbled by Arbroath, six goals to two in the Scottish Cup, then bouncing back strongly by winning three league games on the trot against Monifieth Athletic, Partan Craig and Forfar West End respectively.
MARCH – MAY
March saw ‘The Gowfers’ take on Dryburgh away from home. The games’s turning point was Edelstons’s big penalty save, which put a stop to the ongoing pressure from the home side. The game ended 3-1, with Edmonds, Bradford and Strachan getting the goals.
This victory saw their magnificent unbeaten league run stretch to six. Such good form was needed in preparation for the title contender clash against Brechin scheduled for April. On the day it was Brechin who fell out 2-1 winners, in what was a hard one for the team to take.
The race for the title was no longer in their hands, making this game another season defining result. Next up on the calendar was the penultimate game of the league season, against Dundee United SC. Another high scoring affair headlined by Brandon Black (scoring two goals) saw ‘The Gowfers’ win 4-3 away from home, surviving a late scare, when a penalty was converted for Dundee in the last minutes of the game.
Now it was time for the J Cord Cup Final. The game was covered by the YFS team, and saw St Andrews Colts come up against Carnoustie. The match was played at North End Park, with both teams hoping to receive silverware at the end of the season. The game itself was a classic for the neutrals, but unfortunately one to forget for the U/17 squad. After a fantastic Edmonds hat trick contributed to a 4-0 score line, it all went downhill. The game ended 4-4, with St Andrews winning on penalties.
The league campaign was wrapped up on the 13th of May and with nothing to play for, Carnoustie’s U/17s fell to a 5-0 defeat against the same side that beat them to the J Cord Cup. It was a disappointing end to the season, but the team should hold their heads up high, and build on this solid campaign for the future.
Throughout the season many players also made appearances for the Senior Carnoustie side, displaying the clubs fantastic player pathway policy. It will certainly be interesting to see how they perform next season.