Impressive Peterhead performance has McInally much to be pleased about

The Peterhead team with the Buchan Queen and Princesses and the Scottish Week Challenge Cup.
The Peterhead team with the Buchan Queen and Princesses and the Scottish Week Challenge Cup.

Reading too much into friendly results ahead of the serious stuff can be dangerous but Peterhead kept their recent run going with an encouraging performance against a young Dons side in the Peterhead Scottish Week Challenge Cup on Saturday.

Blue Toon Manager Jim McInally had much to be pleased with as the whole squad looked lively with three Trialists - Scott Ferries, Ryan Baptie and Leighton McIntosh - involved and showing up well.

Rory McAllister took his goal like the player of old and with new signing Ally Gilchrist fitting in well at the back, a side capable of challenging in the coming season may well be in the making.

Aberdeen fielded their Development Team that were the best in Scotland last season bolstered by man of the match, keeper Scott Brown but they never tested Graeme Smith at any stage and were pinned back for virtually the whole match by an exuberant home side.

Kevin Dzierzawski shot over after just a couple of minutes but it was the 20th minute when the deadlock was broken with a well taken goal. McAllister skilfully trapped a through ball from Jamie Stevenson in his stride, brushed aside an attempted challenge by Michael Rose before clipping a shot past Brown from 12 yards for a classy finish.

Eight minutes later it should have been 2-0, another new signing Shane Sutherland setting up McAllister, his shot was blocked by the keeper with Nicky Riley seeing his effort from the rebound superbly saved by Brown.

The second half started with Peterhead having the chance to score again ten minutes in.

Jordan Brown should have hit the back of the net but was denied by his namesake Scott with Riley shooting high over the crossbar as the ball broke to him.

On the hour the first of many substitutions were made with one of them, McIntosh almost scoring within seconds.

McInally is keen to get the young striker signed up and it was easy to see why as his pace and eye for goal was a threat every time the ball came near him.

Other subs followed as did the chances and an Adam Scott header that grazed the left hand post was one of several that could have made the victory more comfortable. 

After the match a delighted McInally said: “We could have won five or six nil but the Aberdeen goalie was in top form.

“I expected a lull after I made the changes but we actually got stronger.

“I didn’t expect it to go as well as that. The whole team played well.

“Some people said we were a bit light in numbers but I don’t think we are.

“We have good quality and have signed some good players in Nathan Blockley and Shane Sutherland.

“Scott Ferries has joined us from Ross County and I have offered Leighton McIntosh a contract so we will wait to see what he says.

“Ally Gilchrist only met his teammates today and slotted in fine.

“We had quality on the bench.

!We were terrific in the first half but I looked at the players we had on the bench beside me so we have good depth in the squad, especially up front if Leighton signs for us.

“If we are going to have a half decent season we need the strikers to be hungry. Nick Riley is a terrific wee player who we are lucky to have. Rory had a lot of critics last season but there were factors for that.

“He became a dad for the first time and he wasn’t fully fit but he is now.

“We could be doing with another game ahead of travelling to Brechin on Saturday and I will be trying to set one up and reverse the team and start with the guys who were on the bench but so far so good,” he added.

PETERHEAD: Smith, Strachan, Noble, Ross, Gilchrist, Dzierzawski, Stevenson,

Brown, McAllister, Sutherland, Riley Subs Jarvie, Blockley, Rodgers, Scott, Lawrence, Trialist, Trialist, Trialist.

Attendance: 771.