Match Report - By Eoin McNicol
A 5-star display saw Brechin ease past Clachnacuddin at Glebe Park with Grady McGrath grabbing himself a hattrick in the process, alongside a well taken goal from Anthony McDonald and a rocket from Kevin McHattie.
Brechin returned to home action on the back of last weeks win over Turriff United. Clach came into this one looking to return to winning ways after a midweek defeat whilst City looked to maintain their unbeaten record.
The only change to last week’s line-up seen Andy Kirk bring in Michael Cruickshank to replace the injured Jordan Northcott who suffered a broken collarbone last weekend.
Brechin started the game on the front foot, and it took just 4 minutes to break the deadlock. A pinpoint pass from Kevin McHattie, something that we would see a lot of in the game, found ANTHONY MCDONALD who calmly slotted the ball past the keeper and into the net.
It was almost 2 goals in quick succession as Marc Scott picked up the ball on the right wing after receiving a similar McHattie pass. Scott whipped the ball into the danger area, but the Clachnacuddin defender managed to position himself well to clear the ball over the crossbar. Scott picked up the ball from the short corner and this time had a go himself, but his effort was wide of the mark.
Just 9 minutes in, Brechin had the opportunity to double their lead as Cruickshank was fouled inside the box by Donald Morrison. Kieran Inglis stepped over the ball and tried to find the bottom right corner but the penalty was to be retaken because of an infringement. Inglis this time tried to go down the middle but the keeper was there to get a strong right foot to the ball to deny Brechin their second.
A well worked set piece started with Inglis and McLeod standing over it. The pair combined for a quick one-two before laying off to McHattie who fired a powerful effort at Martin Mackinnon who parried the shot away from goal.
Brechin kept knocking at the door for the second of the game whilst Lenny Wilson was left with little to do in the first half, but Brechin managed to double their advantage 33 minutes in through GRADY MCGRATH. A brilliant cross from Marc Scott from the wing was placed right on McGrath’s head at the front post, leaving Grady to nod his effort downward and away from the goalkeeper.
Just minutes later there was a golden opportunity for Botti Biabi to get on the scoresheet as the ball was put across the face of the goal, Biabi met the ball at the back post, but his effort went narrowly past the wrong side of the woodwork.
Clach looked to get back into the game quickly after the break as Lenny Wilson was called into action, Connor Bruce fired goalward hard and low, but Wilson was alert and got down quickly to hold the shot.
Minutes later, City were awarded a free kick on the edge of the box after a Gary Warren foul. Anthony McDonald stepped over the ball and whipped his left footed shot with precision towards the top right corner, forcing MacKinnon to make a spectacular save as he tipped the ball over the crossbar.
Brechin grabbed their third just over the hour mark. KEVIN MCHATTIE picked up the ball from around 30 yards, setting himself up for a shot before guiding his rocket of a strike straight into the top left corner leaving MacKinnon with absolutely no chance.
It took just 7 minutes for City to get the 4th of the day past a crumbling Clachnacuddin side. It was once again the skipper who was involved as McHattie put the ball on a plate for the Brechin attack, pinging the ball from left back over the top and through to a running GRADY MCGRATH on the right. McGrath controlled the ball well before cutting the ball across goal and into the bottom left corner in spectacular fashion.
City never stopped as they looked to add another, with GRADY MCGRATH pressing Gary Warren and winning the ball off of the experienced defender. The striker looked hungry for his hattrick, and he would get just that as he cut in and out as Warren desperately tried to rectify his mistake, but Grady showed his class firing the ball into the roof of the net to put the game to bed.
A terrific display from the whole team, but unbelievable stand out performances from Grady McGrath and Kevin McHattie this weekend. Next up is a Highland League Cup fixture against Rothes with a 3pm kick-off.
Other Results - Breedon Highland League
Formartine United 1 Buckie Thistle 2
Forres Mechanics 1 Fraserburgh 1
Huntly 1 Brora Rangers 3
Inverurie Locos 2 Keith 0
Nairn County 2 Turriff United 1
Rothes 3 Lossiemouth 1
Strathspey Thistle 0 Banks O' Dee 7
Wick Academy 2 Deveronvale 1