Three precious points for United

Rutherglen Glencairn..... 0

Cumbernauld United...... 1

Stagecoach West Region Super League, First Division

CUMBERNAULD United left The Clyde Gateway Stadium on Saturday with three precious league points, but in truth, this was not one of their most impressive performances.

Although the weather conditions were ideal, bright and warm, the football overall was not on a par. In a tough uncompromising contest, United gave a gutsy display, got the all important goal and came away with the spoils.

United started well in this battle for vital points but had a scare in the fifth minute when goalkeeper Dave Buchanan, in an attempt to kick the ball up the park, found his clearance blocked by Glencairn striker Ross McNeil and rebound just past the upright. Then the dangerous McNeil hit a great shot which struck the crossbar and was cleared by the United defence.

At this stage Glencairn looked the livelier side and another McNeil effort was well saved by Buchanan, United defender David Marsh was then booked and from the resultant free kick, he made amends heading clear the goalbound shot.

United full back Nico Petrucci was the recipient of some aggressive tackling and twice had to receive treatment from Cumbernauld physio Julie Kavanagh. Eventually the defender had to be substituted by Paul Hanlon.

Towards the interval United were slowly getting on top. After a good penalty claim was disallowed, winger Andy McKeown was shown a yellow card for disputing the decision.

After some meaningful words from manager John Queen at the half time break, United came out fighting and got their reward within minutes. A Gary Gibson cross from the right saw skipper Jim Steele’s shot scrambled off the Glencairn goal line but Kenny Jarvis, following up, crashed the ball into the net.

Encouraged by this success United took command and a Gary Gibson effort was parried by Glencairn goalkeeper Colquhoun. Unfortunately there were no Cumbernauld forwards supporting.

Andy McKeown then had the ball in the net but was clearly offside. A Jim Steele shot was saved before Gibson missed a great chance when through on goal, but pushed his strike past the post.

Glencairn’s Gavin Stokes had an excellent opportunity to equalise but his header from a couple of yards thankfully went wide.

As the half progressed the Rutherglen team upped their efforts in an attempt to salvage at least a point but the United defence David Marsh and Craig Borland in particular, ably supported by Ross Hayman and Paul Hanlon, was holding firm all intent on keeping a clean sheet.

Paul Thomson and Phil Barclay were substituted for Andy McKeown and Dom O’Halloran, as the second period wore on and the homesters mounted some dangerous looking attacks. Two fine saves from Dave Buchanan, however, ensured that there was no reward for the Rutherglen team.

GLENCAIRN: Colquhoun, Galloway, Neil, Aitchison, Ward, McClay, Scott, Esplin, McNeil, Stokes, Moore. Subs: Eadie, Ballantyne, McCarry, Burke, Agnew, Bennett, Hutchison.

UNITED: Buchanan, Hayman, Petrucci, Marsh, Borland, Jarvis, McCabe, Gibson, O’Halloran, Steele, McKeown. Subs: Barclay, McNally, Burns, Thomson, Hanlon, Hill.