Under 20s plans go down the Pans during incident packed clash

Posted on Saturday, September 5th, 2015

Seven goals, 4 penalty attempts, one red card and tropical rainfall (ok, we made up the tropical bit) kept the supporters entertained at Ainslie Park as Spartans under 20s lost 2-5 to an older and physical Preston Athletic on Friday night.

There was a debut between the Spartans sticks for Cameron Feather whilst Paul Dickson watched on from the stands as he continues to recover from his knee injury.

The game burst into life after 9 minutes when the visitors opened the scoring through Aaran Currie. A bouncing ball that failed to attract any players in white and red finally fell to the Preston man who drilled low past Feather.

Spartans responded almost immediately when Jack Smith pounced in the box after reacting quickest following the crossbar having temporarily saved Preston’s lead.  The defender didn’t need an invitation to shoot and the outcome was never in doubt.

On the half hour mark, Connor Brydon restored Preston’s advantage as the rain began to sweep across Ainslie Park directly into the faces of the Spartans defence.

Just two minutes later, Brydon bagged a brace after benefitting from a collision between the home keeper and one of his outfield colleagues.

A frantic eight minute spell for Brydon ended in dramatic fashion when Referee Calder sent the striker for an early shower after he appeared to kick out at Alex Imlah, who received a yellow card for his troubles.

Half Time: Spartans u20s 1-3 Preston Athletic u20s

Spartans almost pulled one back within 60 seconds of the restart when Jonny Grotlin’s effort crashed downwards off Ryan Forsyth’s bar that was so far leading a charmed life, but simply refused to bounce the correct way over the line!

Against the early run of play, Preston all but sealed the destination of the three points at stake after Gavin Stevenson netted after Feather lost out in aerial combat.

If the sending off in the first half offered the punters something to chat about over a half-time Bovril, then the sensational scenes in the 75th minute would give them plenty to discuss long into the night.

The man in the middle irked Preston stopper Forsyth after awarding a spot kick following a trip in the box.  The keeper launched the match ball towards the dugout area in frustration, earning him a caution in the process.

Once the initial excitement died down and order was restored, Forsyth was penalised for encroaching from his line no fewer than three times in quick succession, with Jonny Grotlin finally finding the net from the fourth attempt from 12 yards out.

Any hopes of a Spartans late recovery were dashed as the game entered injury time and Aaran Currie rounded off a fruitful evening in the capital for the Panners by scoring his team’s fifth goal of the game.

Full Time: Spartans u20s 2-5 Preston Athletic u20s

You can watch all the penalty drama as it unfolded on our Facebook page

Next Fixture

Date: Friday 17th May
Opponent: Dumbarton
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: Play-Off Final 2nd Leg
Kick off: 7.30pm

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