Lochee United 3 Kirriemuir Thistle 3

Match report by Jim Davie

Lochee United dropped two vital points in their quest to retain their Superleague title as they were held to a draw by Kirrie Thistle.

The Bluebells missed a host of chances, particularly in the first half, to put this game beyond their visitors, who rallied in the second half and made a real game of it.

The home side were shocked after seven minutes when Ryan Cormack’s cross was met by the inrushing Ryan WINTER who gave Jordan Millar no chance from close range.

Lochee then put their visitors under intense pressure as they sought the equaliser.

Alan Tulleth worked his way into the box and found Danny Cavanagh whose shot was blocked. Then Logan Davie fired a ball across the face of the Kirrie goal which just needed a touch to divert it into the net.

On 21 minutes a poor kick out by Darryl Burns put Tulleth through, but the keeper redeemed himself by forcing the striker wide and forcing him to hit the side netting.

Cavanagh shot over the bar and Danny Millar followed suit by heading over as Lochee piled on the pressure. Another great chance was passed up when Davie failed to connect with a high ball into the box by Grant Lawson.

Tulleth and Ross Gallacher both had efforts blocked before Lochee finally got their reward three minutes before the break. A Cavanagh free kick was bundled into the net by LAWSON.

A minute later Tulleth had the ball in the net but the ref had already blown for a penalty and Dougie CAMERON stepped up to beat Burns from the spot.

That wasn’t the end of the scoring though, because Kirrie managed to equalise on the stroke of half time with only their second effort on goal. A cross from former Lochee player Ross Grant was knocked into the air and Stewart RUSSELL was at the back post to head past Millar.

Kevin Milne came on for Ross McDonald at the start of the second half as Lochee sacrificed a full back for another striker but it was Kirrie who almost scored when Stephen McNally was dispossessed, with Winter seeing his shot go narrowly wide.

The visitors weren’t under the cosh as much as they had been in the first half but Tulleth and Milne both had chances to put the home side back in front.

However, a mistake at the back by Danny Millar on the hour mark allowed Stewart Russell to set up CORMACK who put Kirrie 3-2 up.

The lead didn’t last long though. A long ball out of defence was chased by Tulleth who tried to lob the keeper, but Burns got something on it. As the ball rolled towards the goal MILNE won the race to reach it and send it into the net.

The game was much more even now and Jordan Millar had to pull off a great save to deny Winter. At the other end a Danny Millar header was held by Burns.

Four minutes from time Lochee thought they’d won it but Milne’s effort was ruled offside.

A great point for a much improved Kirrie side but Lochee will kick themselves by not taking the first half chances that could have given them a comfortable victory.

Lochee United: J Millar, McNally, D Millar, Kirk, McDonald (Milne 46), Davie, Gallacher, Cameron, Cavanagh (Buchan 88), Lawson, Tulleth (Deasley 68).

Kirriemuir Thistle: Burns, Rodger, Smith (McNaughton 46), Grant, J Russell, Kerrigan, Fairweather, S Russell (Barclay 88), Cormack (Reid 68), Winter, Kadela.

Written on 10 November 2019