Hampden hoodoo strikes again

MONTROSE FC’s wait for a victory over Queen’s Park continues as Gardner Speirs’ side made it 13 victories in a row over a totally out of sorts Gable Endies at Hampden Park on Saturday.

It is 2005 since Montrose last grabbed a victory over the amateurs, with a 3-0 win at Hampden.

This truly dreadful performance by the Links Park side wasn’t going to change that fact at the weekend. Montrose just couldn’t defend, couldn’t pass the ball and offered practically nothing going forward.

It was a match best forgotten by all.

With Douglas Cameron and Terry Masson both suspended Montrose made two changes, bringing on-loan Arbroath left back Kevin Brown and David McGowan into the side and lined up 4-4-2.

Andrews was in goal with McNally and Brown in full back positions. Campbell and Smart were in central defence.

Boyle was wide right and Johnston wide left in midfield with Young and Winter in the middle of the park. David McGowan and Garry Wood were in attack.

The Montrose substitutes were Crighton, Crawford and under-19 players Sean Kelly and Scott Gordon alongside Sandy Wood.

It the absence of Douglas Cameron, Jonathan Smart took over the captain’s armband.

Montrose created an opening in the third minute when Boyle flicked the ball on but Garry Wood just couldn’t get to it and the home defence cleared.

In the following minute McNally played a one-two out on the flank and when the full back’s cross came in David McGowan was on hand but he could only head the ball over the crossbar.

Montrose were made to pay for these missed chances when Queen’s Park opened the scoring in the fifth minute. Anderson slipped the ball into the path of the unmarked JAMIE LONGWORTH and the striker took a touch before knocking the ball into the corner of the net.

It could have been two the following minute when Montrose again failed to clear a ball into the box and McNally was forced to chest a shot from Martin McBride off the line and out for a corner kick.

In the 15th minute Daly made contact with a cross from the left but he headed straight into the arms of Michael Andrews.

Montrose went close seconds later when Jamie Winter let rip with a trademark 30-yard effort but the ball was tipped around the post by Queen’s Park goalkeeper Neil Parry.

From Winter’s corner kick Boyle headed the ball across the face of goal but there were no Gable Endies players on hand to make contact and another chance went.

In the 20th minute Queen’s Park had another opportunity when a low shot from David Anderson was met by Daly and he deflected the ball inches wide of the far post.

Martin Boyle then fought off a couple of challenges but he couldn’t get free of his marker who managed to hack the ball to safety.

With 23 minutes gone Scott Johnston got on the end of a McNally cross turned but he could only hook the ball well over the bar from 10 yards out.

A great run from Richard Little saw him win Queen’s Park a corner kick after Smart headed the ball behind. McBride’s corner was cleared by the Montrose defence after Michael Andrews and failed to punch the ball clear.

Jamie Longworth caused problems again for the Montrose defence when he ran at them before firing a low shot just past the far post when he should have really found the target.

In the 33rd minute Montrose should have been awarded a penalty kick when Garry Wood was clearly pushed when he tried to get on the end of a Boyle cross from the right, but referee Euan Anderson waved play on.

With 10 minutes of the first half remaining Jamie Winter picked up a booking when he fouled David Anderson as the pair of them challenged for the ball.

Jamie Longworth had a great chance to add to the Queen’s Park first half goal when the Montrose defence opened up once again and he had a clear run through on goal but, thankfully for the Gable Endies, he was unable to add to his earlier goal and shot wide of the far post.

In first half stoppage time Young gave the ball away for Montrose and this time it was David Anderson who had bags of space to run into but again he blasted the ball well over the crossbar.

Half-time: Queen’s Park 1, Montrose 0.

The home side were straight onto the attack at the start of the first half with David Murray racing up the right flank and past McNally into the box. His first cross was blocked but when the ball came back to him he set up Longworth whose effort flew wide of Andrews goal.

The home side didn’t have to wait long for a deserved second goal. Both Campbell and then McNally missed headers in the middle of the park and this allowed MARTIN McBRIDE all the time he liked to race clear and curl an effort into the bottom corner with Andrews totally exposed.

In the 50th minute Montrose had a rare attack when Johnston found debutant Brown on the left flank. His cross was cleared out to Winter but from 35 yards out his effort flew over the crossbar.

Queen’s Park should have scored a third goal in the 56th minute when Longworth knocked the ball down to Watt, but he footed the ball over the cross bar.

On the hour mark Montrose made a change, sending on Sean Crighton at central defence for Alan Campbell who had picked up an injury.

Two minutes later the embarrassing defending continued when Ian Watt tricked Kevin Brown down the right and, despite having four defenders in the box to clear his cross, he managed to pick out the unmarked MICHAEL DALY who powerfully headed past Andrews.

Three minutes later Watt could have had the goal his play deserved when his shot was brilliantly tipped wide of goal by Andrews.

In the 71st minute Longworth tried again but this time the Montrose custodian put his shot behind for a corner kick.

Before the corner could be taken Queen’s brought on Sean Burns for Murray.

McBride then swung in the corner kick and Watt’s flick was tipped over once again by Michael Andrews.

With 77 minutes gone Queen’s Park made it four a goal kick from Parry was missed by the Montrose defence and LONGWORTH was allowed to race clear of the Montrose defence and slot the ball under Andrews for his second goal of the afternoon.

The home side then made a double switch, sending on Tony Quinn and Owen Ronald for Daly and Watt.

With 10 minutes remaining Sean Crighton became the second Montrose player to be booked, in this case for a challenge on Longworth.

Montrose tried for a consolation goal and McNally’s run found Winter in space but again he hit the ball well over Parry’s crossbar.

In the next minute a great run and cross from substitute Ronald set up Longworth but he wasted the chance for a hat-trick when he blasted over the crossbar.

Montrose created an attack of sorts when Wood went on a run out of defence and found Johnston. He played the ball wide to McGowan who found Winter who, not for the first time, shot high and wide over the bar.

With two minutes remaining David Anderson was booked for kicking the ball away.

It should have been five in the final minute of the match when Quinn blasted wide when he could easily have scored.

In stoppage time Queen’s Park did make it five when the Montrose defence played TONY QUINN onside and the substitute raced on to blast an effort low under Andrews to complete the visitors’ afternoon of misery.

Montrose: Andrews, McNally, Brown, Campbell (Crighton), Smart, Young, McGowan, Winter, Boyle, Johnston, G. Wood. Substitutes: Crawford, Gordon, Kelly and S. Wood.