GFR KICK OFF THE LOWLAND LEAGUE CAMPAIGN WITH A WINNING START
BSC Glasgow 2
Gala Fairydean Rovers 3
SKIPPER Scott Main insists there is better to come even after Gala Fairydean Rovers got off to a flying start in this season's Lowland League campaign. The versatile defender reckoned the Braw Lads were well worthy of all three points at Alloa Athletic's stadium which is being used by BSC Glasgow this season.
After a shaky start, Gala showed what they were capable of and managed to squander half a dozen gilt-edged scoring opportunities as they dominated the second half. Trailing 2-1 at the interval, Gala piled on the pressure after the break scoring two quick goals but proceeding to pass by chance after chance. Yet right at the death they had goalkeeper Jamie Newman to thank for preventing BSC from snatching a last gasp equaliser.
Main, who has taken over the captain's armband from the injured Billy Miller, said:"It is a new team and there was a bit of settling in which needed done.
"I thought we were okay in the first half but still managed to find ourselves 2-1 down.
"But in the second half we were well on top and should have scored a lot more.
"The squad is a lot stronger than last year and I think once all the new players settle in we will look a lot better.
"But winning away from home on the opening day of the Lowland League season is a great start by any standard."
BSC striker Robert Jones broke the deadlock after 23 minutes when he was allowed to run unchallenged and fire in a shot from 20 yards which nestled into the bottom corner of the net but Gala hit back three minutes later when Ross Aitchison powered home a header from a Darren Smith corner.
The home side regained the lead in the 39th minute when Jones played in winger Adam Ferris and he showed a cool head by rounding Newman and rolled the ball into the empty net. However after the break it was all Gala. They were soon back on level terms in the 47th minute when Lee Stephen sent over a peach of a cross from the left hand side bye-line and Jack Hay was on hand to head the ball home from close range.
Then in the 56th minute Gala scored what proved to be the winning goal. BSC keeper Joe Wilson could not hold onto a free kick sent into the box by Smith and Stuart Noble, who previously played at Recreation Park for Alloa Athletic, latched onto the loose ball and fired home through a ruck of defenders.
After that it was all Gala but they could not get a fourth goal to kill the game off. The BSC defence could not handle the pace of Hay and the striker had plenty of chances to put the game to bed but was plagued with bad luck. One effort rolled inches agonisingly wide of the post after he had won the race with keeper Wilson for a through ball and slipped the ball past him. Another chance saw Hay fire in a 20 yard shot which struck the inside of the post before being booted to safety.
Despite their dominance, Gala almost let the victory slip when Ferris got in behind the defence in injury time but the alert Newman raced from his line and smothered his shot. There were plenty of positives for Gala from the performance. Eighteen year old Kevin Waugh, a loan signing from Hibernian, looked composed in the centre of defence and his Easter Road colleague Adam Watson came on midway through the second half and looked lively in midfield.
Manager Steven Noble said:"I thought we controlled most of the game. We did reasonably well in the first half but found ourselves 2-1 down.
"But in the second half we totally dominated and as well as getting a couple of goals missed some great chances.
"We still have a bit to go fitness wise so there is room for improvement but I am pleased with the start we have made.
"They are a decent side and looked dangerous at times but we deserved the win."
BSC manager Mark Adams said:"I thought we started well and got in front. But in the second half we did not perform. Every third pass went astray.
"It is a very wide pitch here at Alloa and we will need to get used to it."
This Saturday, Gala Fairydean Rovers entertain Stirling University at the 3G Arena, kick off 3p.m. Premier Club cards apply for this match.
Gala Fairydean Rovers: Newman, Allan, Herdman, Waugh, Main, Stephen, Aitchison, Collins, Smith, Noble, Hay. Subs: Watson, Simpson, Windram, Clapperton, Langford, Trialist.