Strong Forfar Athletic deny win for Blue Toon

Reece Donaldson battles Darren Dods at a Forfar corner
Reece Donaldson battles Darren Dods at a Forfar corner

League one

Sometimes scorelines can be deceptive and this was the case here where Peterhead were on the wrong end of a 1 nil thrashing.

Graeme Sharp chases Dale Hilson

Graeme Sharp chases Dale Hilson

Forfar are a very good side and were particularly impressive in a first half where the Blue Toon keeper Graeme Smith stood between the narrow lead the home side went in with and a handful of goals that the Loons sweeping display of attacking football would have deserved.

The second half saw the visitors restore a degree of respectability although this was largely due to Forfar seemingly happy to sit back on their narrow lead.

This was always going to be a tough assignment for Peterhead with Forfar boasting a lineup which included the vast and vastly experienced Rab Douglas between the sticks with the equally worldly wise Darren Dods, Derek Young and Gavin Swankie in front of him.

The Blue Toon had Andy Rodgers in their ranks after the striker saw red the week before in the Challenge Cup with Dean Cowie again in for the injured Mark Millar despite an impending operation.

Graeme Smith punches a Forfar corner

Graeme Smith punches a Forfar corner

The alarm bells were ringing inside the first minute, Dale Hilson seeing a volley well held by Smith.

Six minutes later a Stephen Husband free kick was headed over by Dods and on the quarter hour, a Dods header from a Danny Denholm corner kick was blocked on the goal line.

After the match Forfar Manager Dick Campbell commented that Smith had made several world class saves and whilst that might be embellishing the truth slightly, his exceptional effort to dive and turn away Hilson’s 34th minute volley was truly a fantastic save that looked like keeping his side on level terms at the break.

A minute later Denholm smashed a 20 yard free kick off the crossbar but just as half time was beckoning, Denholm scored a fine opener, volleying into the top left corner after a cross hadn’t been cleared.

Peterhead rarely interrupted the one way traffic.

Scott Ross had a 9th minute header blocked following a corner kick ahead of their best chance in the 25th minute, Rory McAllister running onto a through ball but with only Douglas to beat, the keeper managed to get a hand on the ball and out it went for a corner.

The Blue Toon were a bit more lively in the second half but the nearest they came to an unlikely equaliser was a rocket of a free kick from McAllister that had the crossbar still shaking five minutes after his shot thundered off it.

At the other end Smith was in action again with a terrific double save first from Swankie then Young.

After the match Manager Jim McInally said his side were still coming to terms with the step up in standard after promotion and there is no doubt Forfar are one of the best sides in the division having beaten promotion favourites Dunfermline and Morton in recent weeks.

On Saturday Stenhousemuir are the visitors to Balmoor.

Peterhead: Smith, Sharp, Noble, Smith (Cox 70), Ross (Strachan 59), Donaldson, Rodgers (Gilfillan 79) Redman, McAllister, Stevenson, Cowie.

Unused: Jarvie, Richardson, Brown, McCann
Attendance: 502