Club night 24/4/17

Malcolm Lees’ hopes of retaining his league title were dealt a blow tonight when he lost 1-0 to Dave Gladman. Lees now trails Tom Burns by 3 points but with a game in hand. With Burns’ superior goal difference it looks likely that Lees will have to defeat Burns in their final match to secure the title. But Burns also faces a difficult match against Barry Corr in his other remaining match whilst Lees could reduce the goal difference in his matches against Dave Houston and Fraser McKenzie.

DSC07998a.jpg

Tonight, however, was Lees’ first league defeat in the forty matches he has played since joining the Glasgow club. He gave away possession too easily at times and tended to rush his play when a more considered approach might have been more productive. Nevertheless in the course of the match Gladman had to produce three excellent saves to keep Lees out. Gladman too, had chances but it was right at the end that the deadlock was broken. Gladman had a shot from a wide angle. The keeper saved but unfortunately for Lees the ball rebounded on to a Gladman player at the edge of the penalty box. He took a touch then chipped the ball over the keeper.

In this league campaign Burns and Lees have each lost only one match. Gladman has inflicted both those defeats. Lees has yet to beat Gladman in a league match. Yet Gladman is 21 points off the top of the league.

DSC04778.jpg

Ronnie McKenzie has been in a great run of form which has taken him to third place in the league. After tonight he still retains third place but he was well beaten by a fine display by John Halpin. This is Halpin’s fourth league campaign and this has proved to be a breakthrough season. He has notched up eight wins where his previous best had been three. Could he go a step further next season and challenge at the top? McKenzie has had a good season also and has developed an excellent possession game. He is still a good bet to finish third which would be way better than his previous best of sixth.

DSC08370.jpg

It was a fully focussed Baver Bari who took on Dave Gladman in the first round of the Association Cup and it resulted in a deserved passage to the next round for the Motherwell man. Bari had taken the lead in the first half only for this to be cancelled out by a second half Gladman strike. A replay seemed to be on the cards but with two minutes remaining Bari forced his way through the centre of the Gladman defence to hit the the ball beyond the despairing keeper.

DSC06371.JPG

League

Gladman 1 0 Lees
Halpin 3 0 R McKenzie

 

Association Cup

Bari 2 1 Gladman

 

1

 

Club night 3/4/17

Malcolm Lees used up one of his games in hand over Tom Burns and moved three points closer to the top. Lees’ goal difference improved considerably with two wins including a 7-0 thumping of Colin Berry. Berry’s previous performances against Lees had been good but tonight he faced a champion in devastating form. Lees and Burns are still to play and Burns’ goal difference is now only five goals superior. That margin could have been smaller but for Willie Fleming’s second half fight back against Lees. Fleming had a lot of the ball and attack in this game but it was Lees’ finishing power which made the difference. Lees raced to a 3-0 lead with Fleming looking dispirited. But a Fleming strike revived his spirits and he was able to make the score more respectable with a late second goal.

DSC08454.JPG

Ronnie McKenzie’s move up the league continued tonight. He now lies in third spot and is looking favourite to finish in that place. He did struggle to beat a stubborn John Mathieson but then took great satisfaction in a 3-0 win over Colin Berry. A miserable night for Berry was completed when he went down to the same scoreline against John Halpin.

DSC08466.JPG

Fraser McKenzie returned to action and started well against Baver Bari taking the lead after only a few minutes. Bari, however, scored a deserved equaliser before the break. It was a close fought match but Bari proved to be the better finisher and edged out McKenzie 3-2. McKenzie might have hoped for a better result but in his second match, against Tom Burns, his expectations were obviously lower. He suffered a 4-1 defeat but at least he won’t have to face Burns again in the league.

DSC08456.JPG
DSC08470.JPG

In the Woodend Handicap Cup John Mathieson started with a two goal advantage over John Halpin. Mathieson began well and took the game to Halpin but as so often happens Halpin broke away to pull back to 2-1 and so it stayed until half-time. With his lead reduced to one goal Mathieson became more cautious but not long into the second period Halpin brought the score level and then went on to break Mathieson’s heart when he netted a third. Halpin joins Dave Gladman in the semi-final.

DSC08461.JPG

League

Lees 3 2 Fleming
Berry 0 7 Lees
Bari 3 2 F McKenzie
Mathieson 0 1 R McKenzie
Berry 0 3 Halpin
F McKenzie 1 4 Burns
R McKenzie 3 0 Berry

 

Woodend Handicap Cup

Mathieson 2 3 Halpin

 

y

 

Club night 27/3/17

It was possible for only four matches to be played, two in the league and two in the Glasgow Cup. Malcolm Lees moved three points closer to Tom Burns at the top of the league with a 3-1 win over Barry Corr. Corr started on the front foot and for several minutes had Lees pinned in his own half. Corr repeatedly forced corners and throw-ins around the Lees goal but could not find a way through. Then on his first attack Lees took the lead. Once again Corr drove forward only to be hit by another Lees sucker punch. Lees had more of the game in the second half and Corr did manage to score but three goals down it was only consolation. Lees won the match with the qualities which have made him Glasgow champion – the ability to defend well when under pressure and an excellent goals to shots ratio.

DSC08447.JPG

John Halpin’s fading hopes of finishing third were finally snuffed out when he went down 2-1 to Willie Fleming. Halpin had started well and led 1-0 at half-time but Fleming came back in the second period. Ronnie McKenzie and Barry Corr remain as threats to Fleming achieving third spot.

The Glasgow Cup semi-finals were also played. In the first Malcolm Lees took the lead against Tom Burns and held it until the equaliser right on half-time. That goal was crucial to the outcome of the match. Burns was able to start the second half without any pent up frustration and went on to score two fabulous goals to secure his place in the final.

DSC08450.JPG

The second semi-final between Willie Fleming and Dave Gladman was a much more dour affair. In a match littered with mistakes neither player was able to gain ascendancy. Both players did have opportunities but did not come close to scoring. They will have to do it all over again.

League

Halpin 1 2 Fleming
Corr 1 3 Lees

 

Glasgow Cup

Burns 3 1 Lees
Fleming 0 0 Gladman

 

e

Club night 20/3/17

The battle for the league championship took another turn tonight. The night started well for Tom Burns after lining up against Willie Fleming. Shortly after kick-off Fleming’s goalkeeper lost out in a tackle on an attacker who was left with an empty goal to place his shot. Thereafter it was Burns who took control of the match and win comfortably by three goals to nil. We wrote last week of Ronnie McKenzie’s fine run of form and that form continued tonight at the expense this time of Tom Burns. This was an exciting match of high quality. Twice McKenzie led and twice Burns equalised almost immediately. When McKenzie went 2-1 ahead with only three minutes remaining, Burns title hopes looked to be fading. But Burns’ determination was rewarded when a superb angled shot found the corner of the McKenzie net. A draw was a fair outcome.

DSC08409.JPG
DSC08429.JPG

Burns now has a lead of nine points over Malcolm Lees who has four games in hand. The two have yet to play their second match. Whilst Lees is still the slight favourite, that late equaliser means that winning the title is still within Burns’ own hands. Currently his goal difference is six goals better and his ‘goals for’ column is greater. An exciting finish to the league is in prospect.

DSC08404.JPG

A number of players are battling it out for third place. After his loss to Tom Burns, Willie Fleming improved his chances with a 2-0 win over Colin Berry. Fleming dominated the match with Berry failing to get a single shot on target. John Halpin’s third place chances are fading, however, following a draw with Dave Houston. Halpin led at half-time but he couldn’t keep that lead.

DSC08413.JPG
DSC08422.JPG

Dave Gladman and Baver Bari fought out a Woodend Handicap Cup quarter final. Bari started a goal ahead but Gladman, playing a methodical possession game, levelled in the first half. Late in the second half Bari took the lead with a glorious shot on the run. But with just over a minute remaining Gladman found the net. The match was decided on shots with Gladman edging out Bari by 2-1.

League

Fleming 0 3 Burns
Berry 0 3 Fleming
Halpin 1 1 Houston
Burns 2 2 McKenzie

 

Woodend Handicap Cup

Gladman 2 2 Bari

Gladman wins 2-1 on shots

d

Club night 13/3/17

In the absence of Tom Burns, Malcolm Lees moved six points closer to the top spot. He now lies five points behind Burns but with two games in hand. The two players have yet to meet a second time. It could well be a league decider. Lees started with a 5-1 defeat of Baver Bari. Bari did create a number of chances in this match but couldn’t score at a time when it could have put pressure on Lees. His goal, coming when he was four goals behind, only gave him consolation. Last time out Bari had drawn with Lees but on this occasion Lees had no problem with his finishing.

DSC08393.JPG

Lees had more difficulty in his second match, this time against Ronnie McKenzie. McKenzie has been in fine form recently and has moved up to fourth in the league. Trailing 1-0 at half-time, McKenzie was able to level not long into the second half but only held that lead for a couple of minutes. McKenzie enjoyed much of the possession, indeed this has been his strength lately and he will be disappointed not to have got a share of the points.

Earlier McKenzie played out a 0-0 draw with old rival Colin Berry. Berry had the better of the first half but it was McKenzie who dominated the second and should have clinched it with a golden opportunity near the end. McKenzie’s best performance, however, was a fine 3-0 win over John Halpin. This season only Tom Burns has managed to beat Halpin by such a margin.

DSC08401.JPG

One Woodend Handicap Cup match was also played. Dave Gladman started with a two-goal advantage over Malcolm Lees and when Gladman scored after only two minutes it was to be an uphill task for Lees. Gladman maintained possession for much of the time and it was well into the second half before Lees pulled a goal back. Gladman will now play either Barry Corr or Baver Bari in the quater-finals.

League

Berry 0 0 R McKenzie
Lees 5 1 Bari
Halpin 0 3 R McKenzie
R McKenzie 1 2 Lees

 

Woodend Handicap Cup

Gladman 3 1 Lees

 

 

 

 

Club night 6/3/17

Fraser McKenzie returned to the club tonight. He hadn’t played since the 26th October and that absence was reflected in his results. He did manage a draw with Dave Houston but lost heavily in his other three matches. Two were against Tom Burns and Willie Fleming but it will be the defeat to Ronnie McKenzie which will hurt the most. Fraser did have a lot of the ball in this match but too often his attacking moves broke down and Ronnie showed no mercy as he exploited the gaps in the Fraser defence.

DSC08367.JPG

It was a good night for McKenzie senior with a win also gainst Dave Gladman. McKenzie had much the better of the first half, scored early and led 2-0 at half-time. Gladman had much more of the ball in the second period but did not look like scoring as he failed to carve out any scoring opportunities.

DSC08388.JPG

With no Malcolm Lees, Tom Burns extended his lead in the league. Before his comfortable win over Fraser McKenzie, Burns came through a tough encounter with John Halpin. Burns looked to have the points secured but when Halpin got on the scoresheet, Burns found himself on the defensive and had to save a penalty to gain maximum points.

DSC08371.JPG

After his glut of goals last week Dave Houston couldn’t find the net against Fraser McKenzie. Against Baver Bari, Houston did take the lead but conceded an equaliser in bizarre fashion. Failing to spot one of his own defenders on the byeline and thinking that three of Bari’s attackers were offiside, Houston made no block flicks which could have prevented Bari from scoring. Bari was also a goal down to Willie Fleming at half-time but as with Houston he came back in the second half to share the points.

DSC08349.JPG

Some members had the chance to play Colin Day who was visiting from Spain. He had returned to Scotland as a result of the sad death of his father for which the club extends to Colin its commiserations.

DSC08376.JPG

 

League

R McKenzie 5 0 F McKenzie
Bari 1 1 Fleming
Halpin 1 2 Burns
Houston 0 0 F McKenzie
Fleming 4 0 F McKenzie
Houston 1 1 Bari
F McKenzie 1 6 Burns
Gladman 0 2 R McKenzie

 

 

 

y

Club night 27/2/17

It is 44 years since Dave Houston founded GTSA. Tonight we saw once again some of the Houston magic of old. Only four players attended on the day after Scottish Circuit 3 and only four games were played. Three of them involved Houston. First up was the Glasgow Cup quarter-final replay against Dave Gladman. The original match was a rather turgid 0-0 draw in which Houston had slightly more of the game. Both players were more adventurous this time around and it only took Houston a couple of minutes to equalise after Gladman had taken the lead. Gladman restored his lead in the second half and despite two glorious opportunites for Houston to gain parity, that lead was held to the end. Nevertheless there were signs of improving Houston form. Gladman joins Tom Burns, Willie Fleming and Malcolm Lees in the semi-finals.

DSC08331.JPG

There followed a double header against Colin Berry, first of all a league encounter. Houston looked the more likely to score but it was Berry, after a controversial refereeing decision ridiculed by the fans, who took a half-time lead. But deservedly, Houston was able to level and share the points. Then the two players faced each other in the Woodend Handicap Cup. Houston has found it difficult to score this season but he started the match with a one-goal advantage. Two minutes in Houston overhit a pass which went through the centre of the Berry backline. Houston’s only option was using a figure very wide right. From this difficult angle, however, Houston was able to avoid the defenders and crash the ball past a surprised Berry keeper. Berry now found himself two goals down with only two minutes on the clock. As Berry commited to attack Houston was able to exploit the defensive gaps and raced to a 4-0 lead. Berry’s single goal was mere consolation.

DSC08333.JPG

In the league Tom Burns played a crucial game against Dave Gladman. In the first half Gladman enjoyed much possession but neither player really threatened his opponent’s goal. Burns scored early in the second half and then doubled his lead after a fine pick-up from distance. The points looked safe but Gladman started to attack with more purpose and soon reduced the deficit. For Burns it was a nervy last few minutes during which Gladman came very close to levelling.

League

Berry 1 1 Houston
Burns 2 1 Gladman

 

Glasgow Cup

Gladman 2 1 Houston

 

Woodend Handicap Cup

Houston 4 1 Berry

 

Club night 20/2/17

Dave Houston moved off the bottom of the table thanks to his first league win of the season. Inevitably it was a low scoring match and decided by a single goal. Houston has only scored three league goals. Ronnie McKenzie had the honour of being the first player to lose to Houston. It was a slow-paced game with few opportunities but there was no doubting the quality of the Houston strike.

DSC08233.JPG

Ronnie McKenzie, however, did have a fine win over Barry Corr. After leading 3-0 he hanging on a little at the end as Corr pulled it back to 3-2. McKenzie continues his rise up the table as he catches up on matches. For Corr it was a disappointing evening after earlier drawing 0-0 with Dave Gladman. Gladman dominated the first half with Corr coming into it in the second but neither player could find the net.

Malcolm Lees closed in on Tom Burns at the top of the league but he had to work hard to overcome John Halpin with a 3-2 win. Lees is two points adrift but with a game in hand.

Two cup matches were played. In the Handicap Cup Ronnie McKenzie started two goals ahead of Tom Burns and when McKenzie opened the scoring the task for Burns looked very difficult indeed. Burns had to be even more cavalier than usual and McKenzie was able to score again on the break. McKenzie marches into Round 2.

In the remaining Glasgow Cup quarter final Dave Houston and Dave Gladman fought out a 0-0 draw, their second of the season. This time it was Houston who had the better of the match but they will have to do it all again.

DSC08232.JPG

League

Gladman 0 0 Corr
R McKenzie 3 2 Corr
Halpin 2 3 Lees
Houston 1 0 R McKenzie

 

Glasgow Cup

Gladman 0 0 Houston

 

Woodend Handicap Cup

R McKenzie 4 1 Burns

 

Club night 13/2/17

Willie Fleming moved two places up the table with two victories tonight. Last season Fleming ran Tom Burns close for second place but that is now beyond him this season. The best he can hope for is third and to achieve that he will face stiff competition. One of those competitors is Ronnie McKenzie and tonight Fleming managed to edge him out in a close-fought single goal win. In Fleming’s other match he had a more comfortable win over John Mathieson.

DSC08206.JPG

Ronnie McKenzie, however, did move his points tally into double figures with a 2-1 victory against Baver Bari. There was very little in this match, indeed Bari did create the chances which could have won him the game. McKenzie remains in ninth position but with his games in hand he will surely climb higher.

DSC08220.JPG

Barry Corr is another contender for third place and before tonight he still had an outside chance of finishing higher. He was to suffer a set-back, though, with defeat to Colin Berry. He was unable to convert numerous chances whilst Berry was able to twice exploit Corr’s defensive gaps. Berry moved above Baver Bari in the league but was unable to climb further after losing 1-0 to Dave Gladman. This match had many similarities to Berry’s match against Corr but this time Berry could not find the net. Berry held out almost to the end but finally Gladman caught the Berry keeper unawares and found the net.

DSC08226.JPG

In the Glasgow Cup Tom Burns and John Halpin fought out an exciting quarter final match. Both players had chances to score but it was Burns who was victorious, netting with less than two minutes remaining. It was cruel blow to Halpin who surely deserved a replay at least.

League

R McKenzie 0 1 Fleming
Berry 2 1 Corr
Bari 1 2 R McKenzie
Fleming 4 0 Mathieson
Gladman 1 0 Berry

Glasgow Cup

Burns 1 0 Halpin

 

 

 

Club night 6/2/17

Tonight’s focus was on the Glasgow Cup. The one remaining fixture in Group A was between Colin Berry and John Halpin. To qualify Halpin needed to win whilst Berry needed only a draw. This was a close fought match which swung back and forth. At half-time the players were locked at 1-1 but it was Halpin who edged the second half and qualified with a 3-2 win. The quarter final line-up was therefore:

Lees v R McKenzie
Fleming v Bari
Gladman v Houston
Halpin v Burns

The first two matches were played. Malcolm Lees powered past Ronnie McKenzie with an emphatic 4-0 victory. The other tie between Willie Fleming and Baver Bari was a much tighter match which was decided in the first half when a weak Fleming shot deceived the Bari keeper and found the corner of the net. After this, few decent chances were created by either player as the game was fought out in midfield. But, since he had the lead this suited Fleming quite well.

DSC08109.JPG

Four league matches took place and in one Tom Burns title hopes took a knock. Colin Berry has made himself a very difficult opponent this season and tonight that was proved at Burns’ cost. It could have been worse as for Burns as he trailed Berry with only two minutes remaining. Burns did have the chances to win this match but it wasn’t to be. As a result Malcolm Lees can now overtake Burns by one point if he wins his two games in hand. Lees wasn’t expected to drop points in his match with John Mathieson and the final score of 4-0 suggests a comfortable win. Mathieson did play and compete well and the result was an improvement on his last Lees’ encounter.

DSC08113.JPG
DSC08115.JPG

John Mathieson’s only league victory this season was against Baver Bari and he was hoping for a repeat tonight. In an entertaining game Mathieson did lead but Bari came back with two goals to record his third league win.

Ronnie McKenzie has a number games to catch up in the league having played as many Glasgow Cup as league matches. Tonight he drew 2-2 with Dave Gladman. Gladman had far more shots on goal in the first half but could not find the net, most of his chances coming from wide angles. It was McKenzie, however, who took the lead just into the second half. It became a much more open game with Gladman no longer dominating the ball as he had in the first half. Twice McKenzie went ahead and twice he was pegged back.

Glasgow Cup

Group

Halpin 3 2 Berry

Quarter Finals

Lees 4 0 R McKenzie
Fleming 1 0 Bari

 

League

Burns 2 2 Berry
Mathieson 0 4 Lees
Gladman 2 2 R McKenzie
Bari 2 1 Mathieson

 

v