ROSELEA faced Dundee North End in a league match on Saturday and, with both sides chasing leaders Dundee Violet, a win was a must for both camps.
North End sat one point behind Roselea who were in turn four points behind Violet. Roselea had injury problems in the lead-up to the game with long term injury victim Calum Rae joined by Lee Hood and Paul Whyte, who had picked up knocks in the friendly against Parkvale on Hogmanay.
The Broomfield Park surface was freshened up in the morning after the impromptu visit of Peterhead who trained on the pitch on Thursday evening (see picture), in preparation for their game with Celtic after their own facilities had been double-booked. Sky and STV cameras filmed the session, bringing the Lea some national exposure.
Disaster struck for Roselea in only 30 seconds when a defensive mix-up allowed North End to attack. After Ryan Taylor cleared the initial shot the rebound was deflected into his own goal by Bob URQUHART.
Roselea came back well but two offside decisions went against them. In five minutes a Riach flick-on was met by Collier but he was given offside; and two minutes later Urquhart had the ball in the net only to be given correctly offside.
A good run down the left by Ryan Taylor saw him cross to Riach; however, Stewart put the ball behind for a corner.
In 18 minutes North End had another chance when a Muckersie corner fell to O’Neill who shot from 20 yards but was six feet wide of the target.
Two minutes later North End had their best chance. After a couple of one-twos the ball broke to Hoy who had spectacular overhead kicked saved by McLeod just beside the post.
In 22 minutes North Ends’s Glennie was lucky to remain on the pitch after a very bad challenge on Mustard which apparently merited only a booking.
On the half-hour mark Anderson went on the run and after a one-two with Urquhart he played the former in on the ‘keeper who made a great save with his feet.
Roselea pressed as half-time approached and had a couple of chances.
Half time: Roselea 0, North End 1.
Roselea started the second half strongly; however, it was North End who had the first chance in 48 minutes. On a breakaway Muckersie and Evans combined well and Muckersie took a shot which was deflected off Urquhart, but McLeod saved comfortably.
With only five minutes of the second half played, Roselea were unlucky not to draw level. A well worked short corner saw Kennedy pick up the ball and shoot from 25 yards at an angle. ‘Keeper Fotheringham managed to tip the ball onto the bar and after it bounced on the line it was cleared. It went quickly to the other end and if McComiskie had not tripped on the ball Roselea could have been in trouble.
The home side made a change on 65 minutes when Aitken replaced the injured Urquhart.
The sub had an instant impact and Roselea drew level a minute later. Kennedy played a short corner to Taylor and his cross was flicked over their head of Fotheringham by FLETCHER.
Craig Anderson was full of running and yet another lung-bursting run saw him draw the North End defence before slipping the ball to Scott Riach. He saw his curling effort go over the top without troubling Fotheringham. Anderson had a speculative shot from 35 yards and although the visiting ‘keeper made it look easy it was a decent strike.
The game exploded in 80 minutes when a couple of fouls led to Gowans being red-carded. Riach was booked for a challenge on Gowans and a minute later the North End player saw a straight red after a touch-line confrontation with Collier.
Roselea were spurred on by this and had a great chance to take the lead two minutes later. Collier linked up well with Fletcher and received a return pass before shooting low, only for Fotheringham to block with his feet again. Aitken just failed to connect with the rebound.
Paul Taylor replaced Ross Colquhoun with five minutes left. Roselea pressed North End for the last few minutes but could not break them down for a winner. North End also had pressure on the break as the day drew to a close.
Roselea: McLeod, Colquhoun, Ryan Taylor, Mustard, Reoch, Urquhart, Kennedy, Anderson, Riach, Fletcher and Collier. Subs: Paul Taylor, Rodger, Aitken, Brand and Craig.
Perhaps a draw was a fair result, considering the endeavour from both teams. Roselea had the upper hand in chances, but Fotheringham in the away goal had a great game.
The draw leaves both sides further adrift from leaders Violet who, despite losing in a cup match at Fauldhouse, would have liked the news from Broomfield Park. Roselea are now three points behind Violet who have two games in hand and it will take a massive failure from them to blow the League at this stage.
Match sponsors Brian Church and the Golf Inn both chose Craig Anderson as their man of the match.
Roselea take a break from League action on Saturday and travel to Carnoustie to face the Gowfers in the second round of the GA Cup. Calum Watson will face his old side as he is currently on loan at Carnoustie from Cove Rangers. The match kicks off at 1.45pm and is played to a finish.