t was a mildly hot day at Petershill Park as the Scottish champions Antonine looked to secure a treble against a very strong Barrhead side. Antonine took the lead in the eighteenth minute when left midfielder Ryan Forrester cut inside and fired home an absolute rocket which sailed into the top right hand corner from twenty-five yards out.
Barrhead then began to put a lot of pressure on the Antonine defence but were not rewarded for their efforts. The final goal came in the fifty-eighth minute when Calum Campbell provided a superb cross for striker Andrew Nixon who rose above the Barrhead defence to slot his header home. The match was closely fought and was a very close encounter throughout the ninety minutes but Antonine held firm and secured the win.
Barrhead were the first to create an opening. In the first minute they applied very high pressure and won the ball back, midfielder David Mullin found himself in acres of space in the Antonine box but goalkeeper Scott Wright was equal to his effort and the ball was cleared.
The next chance came eight minutes in, but it was now Antonine’s turn to attack. After Barrhead only party cleared, the ball fell to midfielder Blair McPherson on the edge of the box whose thunderous volley scraped just wide of the Barrhead goal.
In the twelfth minute Antonine came close to opening the scoring; a cross-cum-shot by right back Euan Urqhart almost crept in under the bar but it struck the frame of the goal and the ball was cleared by the Barrhead defence.
Five minutes later however, Antonine found themselves in front – The ball was switched across to left midfielder Ryan Forrester who cut inside and fired a thunderbolt into the top right hand corner – there will be debates in the Forrester household tonight about whether Ryan intended to shoot, but, it looked superb from the stand so I think it merits a ‘well done’ at least!
Barrhead bounced right back despite the setback. Connon McLean found himself in space just inside the box, the big defender attempted to stab the ball into the net but Wright was able to parry the ball away and it was eventually cleared by the rock solid Antonine defence.
On the half hour mark Barrhead almost equalized. A long throw was launched in from the left and midfielder Jay Burns’ attempt at a glancing header nearly came off but Wright was able to reach and gather the ball.
Right on the stroke of half time Barrhead almost scored but Stuart Locan’s effort from the edge of the box was hit just over and the referee blew his whistle to draw an end to the first half.
The first half was a very tight affair, no team could seem to get a strong foothold in the game and this caused it to be a scrappy match.