Match Report - By Steven Mew
City’s lingering title hopes suffered a crushing blow as fellow challengers Buckie Thistle edged out a scrappy encounter at Victoria Park yesterday afternoon.
It was a game of very few opportunities as both sides struggled to deal with the strong winds throughout.
Manager Andy Kirk handed a debut to new loan signing Layton Bisland whilst Kieran Inglis, Marc Scott and Julian Wade all came into the side as he made 4 changes from the win over Forres Mechanics last weekend. Kevin McHattie, who had netted the winner in that match, unfortunately missed out due to isolation.
The home side, coming off the back of an impressive victory over Fraserburgh in midweek, were looking to make it 14 successive wins in the league and they got off to the ideal start after just 5 minutes.
A 20-yard free kick from MAX BARRY took a deflection off the wall and the ball appeared to be sailing safely into the arms of Jack Wills. Perhaps caught out by the movement of the ball in the wind, the City keeper fumbled into the net.
City looked to get themselves back into the game with Jamie Bain striking a free kick wide after 10 minutes and shortly after, Kieran Inglis also tried his luck from range but was off target with his effort.
Shortly after the half hour mark, the ball fell for Seth Patrick on the edge of the box and he caught his strike well, but it flew straight into the arms of home custodian Kevin Main.
As half time approached, Bain again came close with a free kick which flew just inches wide and two minutes later, Wade’s cross was met by a header from Mackintosh but was straight at the keeper.
Playing against the wind in the second half, City toiled as it became a midfield battle on a heavy surface. Despite having the advantage of the wind behind them, the home side also struggled with their midweek exertions perhaps taking their toll.
Midway through the second period, Cammie Ross replaced Layton Bisland as City chased an equaliser but the reality was that neither side registered a shot on target for the remainder of the match.
With just a few minutes remaining, Andy Kirk made a double change with Ewan Loudon and a trialist striker replacing skipper Iain Davidson and Julian Wade however they didn’t have enough time to make an impact.
As the game creeped into stoppage time, Kieran Inglis dragged a shot wide of target as the Jags held on for the victory.
Another tough fixture awaits next weekend as we play host to 4th placed Inverurie Locos where a win would see City move back above the Locos in the league table.