Longside show their true fighting spirit

Longside had Forres Thistle as visitors on Saturday in the Superleague.

The home side made the perfect start when they opened the scoring in the opening minute, Porter did well on the left and from his cross John Usher coolly slid the ball home.

A Bruce corner was swung over to the far post but Donaldson was crowded out and the chance was lost.

A Davidson free kick for Forres was met by Daley but he headed the ball wide. Marchi found space on the left before finding Cardno arriving at the far side but his shot was deflected for a corner which came to nothing.

Davidson got on the end of a free kick for the visitors but his header went over the bar. Marchi had the ball in the net for Longside after good work by Cardno but the assistant referee ruled offside.

Longside keeper Shields did well to save a 25-yard free kick from Angus. At the other end Campbell saw his shot blocked before Park got to the rebound but he dragged his shot wide.

Another Forres free kick was headed across goal by Ross but Donaldson did well to hook the ball clear.

Campbell had a great chance to double the lead when he turned brilliantly inside the box but fired his shot over the bar from ten yards. Shields made a good save to gather a Fraser free kick. Cardno and Marchi combined before the latter fired in a shot which was saved by Bremner.

Usher put Marchi clear on the left and his shot flashed across the goal before going out for a goalkick. Longide looked to have a good claim for a penalty when Bremner sent Usher sprawling in the box but the referee gave a corner which came to nothing.

Campbell raced clear from the half way line only to be tripped up outside the box, Usher fired the free kick over the bar.

With 49 minutes gone Thomson wrestled Marchi to the ground just outside the box before aiming a punch at the attacker, in the ensuing melee the referee branded red cards to Thomson of Forres and Campbell of Longside. Marchi was shown a second yellow so he was ordered off also.

Longside were awarded a penalty three minutes later when Usher was felled in the box, Park’s spot kick was saved by Bremner. With 55 minutes gone the Longside plight looked bleak when Park was shown two yellow cards in quick succession which meant Longside were down to eight men.

Shields made a good stop to save a Ross free kick.

A stunning 20-yard free kick from Bruce for Longside crashed off the crossbar with Bremner beaten. A poor clearance from Shields gave Ross a chance but his shot went wide.

The home side continued to take the game to their opponents and Cardno and Usher went close in quick succession. Henderson sent a header narrowly wide of the Longside goal. Cardno and Usher were replaced in the latter stages by Davidson and Danton.

Finally Longside get back to winning ways, and after going down to eight men it was always going to be an uphill battle but the players deserve tremendous credit for the way they battled and showed great spirit to earn all three points.

This truly was a team effort from the management, coaching staff and all the players. Anyone who watched the game can make up their own minds if it was a dirty game and if it warranted countless free kicks, four red cards and yellow cards in double figures.

This Saturday Longside are at home to Sunnybank in the Superleague with a 1.30pm kick-off.

LONGSIDE: Shields, Black, Bruce, Beddie, Donaldson, Campbell, Cardno, Park, Marchi, Usher and Porter. Subs: Whyte, Panton, Davidson, Butcher, Danton and Cook.