Pupils to the four in opening league win

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Campbeltown Pupils 4
Glynhill Moorcroft 0
SAFL Premier Division One

Campbeltown Pupils made a stunning start to their 2019/20 league campaign with a four-goal victory over Glynhill Moocroft on Saturday.

Determined to pick up three points in front of an expectant Kintyre Park crowd, the McFadyens-sponsored Pupils produced a disciplined performance to run out convincing winners.

The Pupils had a chance to score within the opening minute when Scott Souden played in Donald McCallum, but the visiting keeper came to the rescue and made a strong save.

The Pupils’ early pressure told again when young winger Ross Brown advanced towards goal, only to square the ball to Gregor McFadyen, but the lone striker found himself ahead of the ball and could only hook a shot wide of the target.

There was another chance for Donald McCallum but he saw a tremendous curling effort from 25 yards bounce back off the crossbar, and Brown’s header on the rebound couldn’t find the net – but he did appear to be barged in trying to jump for the ball.

McCallum would not be denied, though, and after half an hour he latched on to Brown’s neat infield pass to slot the ball under the sprawling keeper with his left foot.

The goal was the release the Pupils needed, but a moment of hesitation in defence only minutes later nearly cost a goal, when Glynhill’s number nine produced a fine header which looked to have crossed the line, but young Pupils keeper Alasdair Ferguson – who, along with his centre-half screen of Lee Allen and Ross Souden, enjoyed an excellent game – managed to clamber it back to safety, and play continued.

Into the second half, the Pupils were almost in again within the first minute of play, with Brown’s effort denied by a last-ditch tackle by a Glynhill defender.

Then, after Stuart Crossan and Donald McCallum both saw almost identical efforts flash wide of goal from a tight angle, the Pupils doubled their lead when Crossan’s floating free-kick was guided back across goal by right-back John McCallum’s header, for Gregor McFadyen to score his second in three games on his return to action, with a perfectly executed left-footed volley that gave the away keeper no chance.

Introduced with only 20 minutes remaining, Marcin Radecki wasted little time in making an impact on his Kintyre Park debut. Assisted by Scott Souden’s low cross from the left flank, the substitute striker guided a delightful flick into the net beyond the Glynhill keeper. Taking on the role of target-man with gusto, Radecki played a big part in the Feathers-sponsored Pupils’ fourth goal, when he held off a defender down the right wing and crossed to substitute Calum McKillop, whose back-heel flick found Souden at the penalty spot, and the 20-year-old winger, making the journey home from Edinburgh for a game, passed the ball into the net with ease to complete the scoring.

The game became a procession in the closing minutes with man-of-the-match Crossan, the midfield linchpin alongside the impressive Liam Renton, orchestrating some controlled possession football, but there was some trouble on 82 minutes when a malicious foul on ex-Dumbarton man D McCallum sparked into a melee with players from both sides involved. It resulted in a second booking for Kenny Kerr, a yellow for J McCallum, and a red card for the original Glynhill culprit, as well as yellow for the visiting keeper from referee Jimmy Litster, after charging from his own goalmouth to become involved.

Undeterred, the Pupils settled back down to seal a richly deserved victory,achieved through a disciplined and determined performance.

The Kintyre Park side will now enjoy a free week, with a return to action scheduled for Saturday October 5, opponent to be confirmed.

For fixture updates, and to see second-half action and goals from last Saturday’s match, see Campbeltown Football on Facebook, or @PupilsAFC on Twitter.