Match Report - By Eoin McNicol
City's long unbeaten league run came to an end as an in-form Formartine United got the better of a lacklustre City side at North Lodge Park yesterday evening.
City just weren’t at the races from start to finish in Aberdeenshire for this midweek clash, failing to take advantage to go back to the summit of the table.
The difficult surface meant Brechin were forced to change their usual passing style of play and instead play long balls for the majority of the game, with the organised and physical Formartine backline unfortunately dealing with everything that came at them.
Andy Kirk made two changes from the weekends 5-1 thrashing over Inverurie, with Koutsimouka dropping to the bench for the return of Kevin McHattie and Botti Biabi coming in for Jordan Northcott.
Early on, Formartine showed they were right up for it with aggressive tackles across the park, giving Brechin no time on the ball and winning the ball back quickly.
There were no real chances at goal in the opening minutes, the first opportunity came from a long range free kick in the 18th minute which Jamie Bain stepped over. The skipper spotted a gap between the keeper and his post and opted for the long shot as he tried to catch the Ewen MacDonald out, but the goalkeeper managed to get back over and tip the ball away for a corner which came to nothing.
Just 2 minutes later, Marc Scott looked to have taken the lead for City after having the ball in the back of the net following a big deflection, but the linesman’s flag was up for offside.
Formartine then had a chance to take the lead as Paul Campbell played through on goal, but McHattie was there to make an important tackle to stop the attack in the box. Despite shouts for a penalty, a free kick was giving the other way.
With 24 minutes on the click, Formartine found an opener through PAUL CAMPBELL who got on the end of Scott Lisle’s cross which put it on a plate for the striker to tap home.
Seven minutes before the break, Marc Scott was picked out well by Fraser McLeod, but Scott’s cross was blocked by the sliding Formartine defender.
Andy Kirk brought on some extra fire power early on in the second half with Grady McGrath replacing Anthony McDonald.
Bain tested MacDonald from a set piece for the third time in the match as his free kick went through all the bodies in the box to the keeper.
City pushed for the equaliser, but chances were squandered with a couple of weak efforts at goal from Loudon and McGrath.
Just under the hour mark, Grady McGrath was inches away from levelling his side as he rattled his effort off of the woodwork from the edge of the area.
On minute 73, Marc Scott was set to fire at goal before being pulled to the ground by Kieran Adams right on the edge of the box. The referee awarded City the free kick and showed the yellow card to Adams amidst screams for a penalty and red card from the away support. McGrath took the close range free kick but his effort was blazed over the bar.
Hamish Thomson came on to replace Nathan Cooney for the final 10 minutes, and almost made an instant impact as Brechin had two corners in quick succession. Inglis whipped in the corner which met Marc Scott at the front post who flicked the ball goalward but was deflected onto the roof of the net for another. The resulting corner found the head of Hamish Thomson, but the header from the big defender lacked enough power to test MacDonald.
With 81 minutes on the clock, Formartine killed the game by doubling their lead late on. JULIAN WADE came back to haunt his old side as the Dominican smashed the ball into the bottom left corner from outside of the box.
Brechin’s last chance of the match came through another free kick, which Jamie Bain smashed off the crossbar and out of play.
City have little time to dwell on the result and will look to bounce back as they travel to face Huntly this coming Saturday at Christie Park.
Other Results - Breedon Highland League
Forres Mechanics 0 Clachnacuddin 0
Huntly 1 Keith 0
Lossiemouth 1 Banks O' Dee 2
Rothes 9 Strathspey Thistle 0
Wick Academy 1 Brora Rangers 7