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Swifts fall to first defeat as Real hold on

Real Fife FC 2

McIntosh 8' 37'

Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC 1

Young 68'
  • Sunday, 04 October 2015
  • McDuff Park
  • Under 14´s
  • Fife Football Development League Division 1

Matthew Sigsworth | YFS Fife Senior Reporter
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow fell to their first defeat of the season on Sunday at the hands of a talented Real Fife side at McDuff Park. Two goals for Reece McIntosh put the hosts into a comfortable lead, but a late goal from Kieran Young almost sparked a comeback, and Real were made to dig in to get the three points.

The game’s first chance came when a Nairn Connely free kick was only half cleared to the edge of the area, and Steven Jeffries ran onto the ball to hit a volley that skidded along the turf but was comfortable for Lewis Sinclair, who saved and held onto the ball.

The lively Jeffries then almost found himself clean through on goal, but Sinclair was able to rush off his line and smother the ball at the feet of the forward.

Blair Chalmers then strode out of defence with purpose and tried a shot from distance, but Josh Ellis was more than equal to it and made a comfortable save.

The first goal was not long in coming, and it was a sensational ball from midfield that released McIntosh, who showed great composure to take the ball around Sinclair and finish into an empty net.

The goal was nothing more than Real Fife deserved, and they went on to dominate large parts of the first half with Kieron Bowie pulling the strings in midfield.

Connely showed quick feet to escape his marker in midfield and play a ball up to Bowie, who sent another raking pass through the heart of the Swifts defence to release Jeffries on the right of the area, and although his low right foot shot beat Sinclair, the striker could only watch as the ball cannoned back off the foot of the post and away from danger.

The move was on time and time again for Real, and just moments later Bowie played an almost identical ball to release Jeffries again, who this time took the high road and tried to chip the advancing Sinclair, but the ball dropped agonisingly wide of the post.

Jeffries was causing havoc with his pace, and he again found space to turn and run at the Inverkeithing defence from a throw in, getting close enough for a shot that this time was on target, but Sinclair did brilliantly to parry the ball away.

Having come under pressure for much of the game so far, Inverkeithing finally found some respite as they ventured forward to mount an attack of their own.

A long ball up towards Owen Bathgate was well defended by Brandon Wight, and after Chalmers played a good ball out wide to Callum Laydon, the wide man’s touch let him down and he was unable to bring the ball under control.

Inverkeithing were soon made to regret their missed opportunities as Real doubled their lead just moments later.

The influential Bowie found space from a throw in, and after racing to the byeline cut the ball back across the face of goal for McIntosh to smash the ball home at the far corner.

The game could have easily been out of reach for Inverkeithing just before half time, as Jeffries again found space in the right channel for a shot but was again was denied by a fine save from Sinclair, and the goalkeeper was on hand again as the rebound fell to McIntosh, getting down low to turn his effort away at the near post.

  • Half Time:
  • Real Fife FC
  • 2-0
  • Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC

Inverkeithing looked to put the first half behind them at the start of the second, as Kieran Young went close with a curled effort that sailed just over the bar from the edge of the area.

Despite sitting further back in the second half, Real Fife looked a constant threat on the counter attack, and created a two versus one as they broke with pace from an Inverkeithing attack, but a fantastic tackle from Cameron Sneddon stopped the move. Sneddon then strode up the pitch before playing a superb pass to Young, who’s right footed shot fizzed just passed the post.

The game had a real end to end feel about it now, and Cieran Nicol had to be on hand for Inverkeithing as he covered well to stop Callum Wallace from racing clear on goal.

Sinclair then produced a fantastic double save to keep his side in the match, first Bowie used his pace to escape the Swifts defence, but despite being one on one the goalkeeper stood his ground to produce a good save. Then, when the rebound fell to the feet of Jeffries there looked to be only one outcome, but Sinclair was quickly back on his line to block the shot as Jeffries looked to place the ball into the far corner. There was one final chance in the move as the ball this time fell to McIntosh, but he again passed up the chance to complete his hat-trick as he steered his shot wide.

Jeffries did not stop running at the Swifts all match, and he was again at the centre of the action as he drove forward with real determination, but in the end his long range shot was wide of the goal.

Inverkeithing were still pushing forward themselves, knowing that there was still time for a comeback if they could find a goal. A long ball over to Bathgate looked promising, but Ellis was alert to the danger and sped off his line to mop up.

Sinclair then pulled off a hat-trick of fine saves to keep his side in with a sniff of some points. First, he denied Bowie’s shot from the edge of the area. Then, Jeffries unleashed another cannonball from distance, with Sinclair able to turn the ball away at full stretch. Finally, after Jeffries again ran directly at the heart of the Swifts defence, Sinclair was again able to stop the shot and was grateful to see Connely fire the re-bound over the bar.

Those saves suddenly seemed all the more important when, almost out of nothing, Inverkeithing found themselves right back in the game.

A long ball over the top caught the Real defence napping, and Young beat substitute goalkeeper Adam Blyth to the bouncing ball and neatly lobbed the ball into the back of the net.

Inverkeithing now poured forward to try and find an unlikely equaliser. Laydon was picked out in plenty of space on the right, but the Real defence swarmed around him and were able to clear the danger.

Despite the onslaught Inverkeithing were not able to find another way through, and there was just enough time at the end of the match for Sinclair to pull off another save from Jeffries, comfortably holding on to a long range effort.

  • Full Time:
  • Real Fife FC
  • 2-1
  • Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC

Lineups

Real Fife FC
Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC
23. Josh Ellis
1. Adam Blyth
2. Chris Walker
3. Brody Douglas
5. Kieran Mercer
6. Darren Paton
7. Logan McLeod
8. Callum Wallace
9. Nairn Connely
10. Kieron Bowie
11. Steven Jeffries
15. Reece McIntosh
16. Mitchell Young
17. Brandon Wight
19. Cory Gardner
1. Lewis Sinclair
2. Cameron Sneddon
3. Innes McMenamin Hunter
4. Blair Chalmers
5. Kyler Harrison
6. Ronan Hall
7. Cieran Nicol
9. Kieran Young
10. Ben King
11. Miller Robertson
12. Cameron Robertson
16. Callum Laydon
17. Owen Bathgate
Star Player
Real Fife FC
Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC
There were two candidates for this. Kieron Bowie had a superb game and his range of passing was a joy to behold. Steven Jeffries was also a constant danger to Inverkeithing, his pace and eye for a shot from distance kept the visiting defence on their toes and certainly brought the best out of Lewis Sinclair in the Swifts goal. I can't pick a winner, so it's a joint award this week!
Lewis Sinclair (Goalkeeper) - Did not deserve to be on the losing side, but there is no doubt that had he not pulled off a series of fantastic saves in the second half Real Fife could have been out of sight before Youngs goal late on. More often than not he was equal to what came his way, a great performance.
Magic Moment
Real Fife FC
Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts Yellow FC
Reece McIntosh's second goal to put his side two nil up at the break capped a fantastic overall team performance from the hosts.
Sinclair's saves may have provided the foundation for a potential comeback, but Kieran Young still showed great composure to lob the ball over the advancing Blyth and into the back of the net.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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