Firstly a quick update – We’ve been drawn away to Leith Athletic in the South Challenge Cup 3rd Round – Another team 2 tiers below us and another local team so hoping for another good win. We don’t have a game (yet) the Saturday before the game so I might not need to rotate so much.
Our Ressies won 5-3 Away to Lochar Thistle Res on Thu 20th – Ross Guthrie with a hat-trick (may look to get him a bit more involved next week), Matthew Cunningham and Shaun Turnbull all scoring.
So to today – Wick Academy ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wick_Academy_F.C. ) in the far far far North of the mainland. This will be my day (Considering we want to be in Wick for 1:30pm at the earliest)
- 0515 – Get up, quick shower, bite to eat
- 0615 – Leave for Christie Gillies Park
- 0700 – Meet at Christie Gillies – wait for everyone to turn up
- 0730 – Leave for Wick (254 miles)
- 1030ish – Stop for an All-Day breakfast/Brunch in Inverness after a few wee breaks en route
- 1115 – Set off again
- 1330 – get to the Ground
Its a bit of a mammoth journey, though if we were from Stranraer it would take more like 7 hours. As the journey is so far I fully expect the game to represent that with us not being on par – I hope I’m wrong as I really want to get through. Our scouts have Wick at about the same level as us – One 4-star current, 3 3.5 and a few 3’s – but after 6 games in the Highland League they sit 14th with 5 points (W1 D2 L3) so even with the journey I’d have us a favourites, especially having rested a few players in the 6-0 in mid week. I’ve also rested all sub 80% condition players – I doubt Kev Waugh will train until the week after next with Today(Sat)-Wed-Sat games still to come – so we should be as fit as we can be. Kieran Balfour passed a fitness test but I’m in no rush to get him back in – I need him fit for the rest of the season.
The usual 4-1-4-1 DM Wide which has done very nicely for me so far. I’m starting Faye over the loanee Barras (Winger v Inside Forward). MOTM from the 6-0 v LTHV Mackay is rested for the league game on Wednesday v Spartans. Wick are playing a 3-2-2-2-1 Wingbacks so very high up the wings, but as they have 3 Central Defenders we will be 3 v 2 in the middle of midfield.
HT Wick Academy 0 Civil Service Strollers 1 (Faye 6)
Wick started the game in noticeably worse condition, and we took the lead after 5 minutes after a shot from Faye was parried by the Wick keeper, and Faye himself pounced on the rebound. 1-0. We continued to dominate but couldn’t make the possession count, and Wick slowly drew themselves back into the game. Donaldson made a lovely save from a free kick in the 38th and they hit the woodwork from a header soon after, but we closed the half out to go in 1-0. Of the 13 shots we have had only 2 were on target which is disappointing, But we had 61% possession so will hope to continue that in the 2nd half. We need a cutting edge though.
FT Wick Academy 0 Civil Service Strollers 3 (Faye 6, Garden 62, 90+2) Att 536 (1 Away)
The second half started well, but we still couldn’t impose our dominance. Hainey came off for Garden, who almost instantly scored from a header to make it 2-0 in the 62nd minute. Wick never really made it into the game after that and Garden made it 2 for him and 3 in total in injury time after a long ball from Mair left him 1-on-1. We really took control in the 2nd half – Possession up to 64%, Passes completed up to 83%. Left Back Tom Kelly got MOTM with 3 key passes. Also a quick thanks to John, our only travelling supporter 🙂 A job well done – The 2nd round beckons.
And……….we’ve been drawn away to Annan Athletic of Division 2 on a 4G pitch so our passing style should pay dividends – They have lost to Peterhead this season (We drew in a friendly) so I see that as winnable!! Lastly – 9 competitive games, 9 wins, 1 goal conceded #unbeatables 🙂 🙂