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    Allan Maitland previews Clyde game 

    Friday, October 30, 2009 3:07:28 AM

    We welcome John Brown, John McCormack, the coaches, players, directors and of course the “Bully Wee” supporters to the “Recs”. I would like to offer a particular warm welcome to Neil Watt who is now the Director of Football at Clyde – Neil played centre back for Maryhill Juniors when Denis McDaid and I were in charge and helped us transform a decent side into a team that were among the best in Scotland and winning trophies regularly. I have the utmost respect for Neil and wish him well in his new role.
    Reading the reports on our game last week would suggest that we were almost making up the numbers in a match that Peterhead dominated and missed glorious chances. What they failed to mention was that our own contribution to a game played in dreadful conditions was excellent despite injury and illness hampering our options before and during the match - and we also had wonderful opportunities to win the game. Both Iain Russell and Scot Buist were ruled out before we travelled North and Chris Townsley, David McClune, Brian Carrigan and Andy Scott all complained of feeling poorly an hour before kick-off. We started the game strongly but were forced into a change when Hugh Kerr was stretchered off after a tackle that on another day may have resulted in a red card – I don’t believe that Stuart Smith deliberately tried to injure Hugh but his tackle was late and high and the referee (who handled the game extremely well and took the weather conditions into consideration throughout) chose to book him. Hugh’s first start in the first team ended on a stretcher and 4 stitches to repair a bad gash on his knee. Davie Crawford made a magnificent penalty save when David McClune was judged to have fouled Graeme Sharp and Martin Bavidge shot wide when he looked likely to score. However, “Bomber” was unfortunate not to score when he broke into the box after great link up play with Stuart Noble, Mark Gilhaney twice came close to getting on the end of decent balls into the box and he then had a driven cross that John Bateman did well to tip over. Stuart Noble was showing the form from earlier in the season and was giving the Peterhead defence a difficult afternoon. We had Andy Scott physically sick at half time and Chris Townsley declared that he was feeling terrible – to make matters worse the heavens had opened and the gusting winds were supported by the rain. Martin Bavidge hit the post and Andy Scott had a great chance when he blasted the ball high after breaking through after a great piece of play by Stuart Noble. Chris Townsley finally succumbed to illness after a brave effort and “Gils” came off when he damaged his thigh, which meant that all our changes were forced rather than by choice. Despite this the team showed great character and determination not to lose the game and thoroughly deserved the point gained. We now need to build on that and try to get back to winning games again, which won’t be easy against a rejuvenated Clyde side who have been picking up points consistently over the last 4 games. Willie Sawyers, a striker we watched at Maryhill Juniors last year, has found his scoring touch and his goals at Stirling and Arbroath have shown that he is certainly well capable of scoring goals in this division. Their result at Stirling last week shows just how much they’ve improved over the last month and John Brown will no doubt be pleased with the support he’s getting from John McCormack since his arrival at the club. I watched Clyde play a young and enterprising Manchester United side at Broadwood a couple of weeks ago and was impressed with Scott Nisbett who played as a trialist and certainly helped to organise the players around him. We know that we will need to improve as an attacking force if we hope to pick up three points today but believe that our fortunes are bound to change if we continue to work hard and believe in the quality of players at the club.
    I have to make special mention today to the superb support we had at Peterhead and hope that the fancy dress crew (especially Ginger Spice) didn’t suffer hyperthermia from the conditions. Also a huge thank you to everyone who helped make the Sportsman Dinner on behalf of the Youth Teams a great success, including the first team who turned out in good numbers despite the defeat against Dumbarton.
    I hope you all enjoy the game today.
    Allan Maitland
    Team Manager

     



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