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Gala Fairydean Rovers FC 1
Annan Athletic FC 2
26th December 2020
Alex Mitchell,  Tyler Fulton,  Cammy Clark,  Matty Douglas,  Lewis Hunter,  Jordan Lowdon,  Ross Love,  Owen Moxon,  Aidan Smith,  Kyle Fleming (Iain Anderson, 80),  Max Wright (Aaron Splaine, 80),  
Jordan Pettigrew,  Steven Swinglehurst,  Mark Docherty,  Harry Emerson,  Russell Currie,  

Annan Athletic faced a potential banana skin in this first round Scottish Cup tie against former opponents Gala Fairydean who’s only previous home defeat this season was at the hands of Kelty Hearts and it was Annan who progressed to the second round courtesy of an 80th minute deflected Jordan Lowden’s effort. The match was played in horrendous conditions with the incessant wind and rain being making it difficult for both teams.

The Annan line up showed a couple of changes form the team which drew with Brechin City in mid week with Kyle Fleming and Jordan Lowden replacing Iain Anderson and Mark Docherty who were both relegated to the bench, Aidan Smith and Max Wright formed the central Annan attack as Murphy set his side up in 4 4 2 formation. Making a welcome return to the bench was Club Captain Steven Swinglehurst who has been hampered with a hamstring injury.
Gala started the match on the front foot but Annan gradually started to get a foothold in the match and it was a fine move down the left in the 21st minute which cut open the Gala defense and was instrumental to Annan taking the lead , Jordan Lowden collected the ball from Cammy Clark and he threaded the ball into the path of Aidan Smith who slipped the ball past the advancing Fraser Morton and into the corner of the net from 15 yards.
Owen Moxon was booked for a challenge on MacKenzie in the 25th minute as Gala started to enjoy a good period in the match , Mitchell then pulled off a fairly routine save from MacKenzie in the 34th minute . Max Wright then forced Gala keeper Fraser Morton into conceding a corner kick in the 38th minute which Gala defended.
The second half started with a bang for the home team who won a corner kick and centre half Gareth Rodger headed home the equaliser to give the home team a real tonic. We now had a real cup tie with both teams going all out for the winner . Owen Moxon came very close with a great effort in the 53rd minute when his 25 yard shot went narrowly over the bar with the keeper beaten. Minutes later Kyle Fleming’s header from a Jordan Lowden cross was scrambled clear as Annan threatened again.
Annan looked dangerous at this period of the game , in the 70th minute the Gala defense scrambled clear another dangerous Jordan Lowden cross with keeper Fraser Morton blocking a Kyle Fleming effort.
Then in the 75th minute Scott MacKenzie unleashed a good effort from 20 yards which Mitchell dealt with tipping the swerving effort over the bar for a corner kick. The subsequent Mark Berry corner was headed clear by Matty Douglas.
Annan brought on Iain Anderson and Aaron Splain in the 80th minute as the Annan boss went all out to win the game and minutes later it was Jordan Lowden who grabbed the winner when he picked the ball up wide on the left cut inside and his well struck shot from 15 yards struck the head of Rodger ‘s on its way into the net.
It was an important victory for Annan against a good Gala team who played football from the back , Annan are just glad to be in the hat for the next round and will be hoping that the draw lans them a home tie. The next round of the cup is scheduled to be played on Saturday 9th January 2020.
GALA FIARYDEAN ROVERS – Fraser Morton, Lewis Grant, Calum Hall, Craig McBride, Gareth Rodger, Ben Herdman, Archie Rowe, Scott MacKenzie, Phill Addsion, Danny Galbraith, Mark Berry, Subs not used Jacob Campbell, Ross Aitchison, Sean Ward, Aiden Walsh, Liam Campbell, Jamie Shiel.
ANNAN ATHLETIC – Alex Mitchell, Tyler Fulton , Cameron Clark, Kyle Fleming ( Iain Anderson 80 min ) , Matthew Douglas, Ross Love, Lewis Hunter , Owen Moxon , Max Wright ( Aaron Splain 80 min ), Jordan Lowden, Aidan Smith ,. Subs not used. Jordan Pettigrew, Mark Docherty, Harry Emerson, Russell Currie, Steven Swinglehurst. ,
Referee – Stewart Luke Assistants Craig Macrae and William McAleese
 
 
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