Nitten slump as team fails to gel

Newtongrange 0-2 Jeanfield Swifts
Newtongrange 0-2 Jeanfield Swifts

Star slumped to their second defeat of the season with a disappointing performance against newly-promoted Jeanfield last Saturday.

Errol Douglas had the first chance after four minutes when he was released down the left, but he did not get enough loft in the attempted chip and the ball was easily gathered by Mitchell.

Jeanfield’s Fraser Smith showed neat footwork after six minutes as he slipped past O’Brien and Lally but his near post cross was headed just over by Kelly.

The visitors came close in 14 minutes when a long ball over the top released Kelly. He easily outpaced Gary Hamilton but his attempted chip drifted just wide.

Jack Wilson had the ball in the net after 16 minutes but it was ruled out by the linesman’s flag.

Next Smith fired in an effort from 20 yards which Dodds had to get down quickly to turn the ball away, before the linesman’s flag ruled out another Star goal after 23 

Jeanfield took the lead on 34 minutes when Kevin Bracks was brushed off the ball too easily and while he claimed for a foul the ball was played to Scott inside the box. He turned Wright inside out before firing in an effort which appeared to take a deflection as it looped over Dodds and into the net !

Hamilton was booked after 37 minutes for a show of dissent and Newtongrange’s job became more difficult when he crashed into Holt and was dismissed after being shown his second yellow.

The Star came close with their best move of the game after 59 minutes. O’Brien burst past three Jeanfield players before finding Wright with a well-weighted pass, but his first-time effort flew inches over the bar.

Jeanfield clinched their victory in 68 minutes when Smith had a free run at 
Dodds and produced a cool finish.

It should have got worse for the Star after 72 minutes when McManus came steaming in at the back post only to somehow head the ball wide from six yards when it looked easier to score.

James Flynn was introduced to the Star’s game after 78 minutes to replace Douglas before a Cropley effort was gathered by the keeper at the second attempt and a Currie effort on the half volley flew into the car park after 81 minutes.

This was a very disappointing performance by Nitten after a decent start to the 

With a brand new team, inconsistency was likely to be an issue, but a much-improved performance will be required as the season progresses.