Burgh helpless as Vale put on attacking masterclass

PA Bruce celebrates bringing the Burgh level with Deveronvale.
PA Bruce celebrates bringing the Burgh level with Deveronvale.

Fraserburgh Football Club were left helpless to prevent a perfect Deveronvale performance that saw the visitors leave with all three points.

Fraserburgh had gone into the match in the knowledge that a win would have been enough to rise above their visitors in the Highland League table, but, with their first choice goalkeeper, Paul Leask, out of action for the game, it was always going to be an uphill battle.

Defending from their Station end, the Burgh had started Leask’s understudy Scott Cowe between the sticks. However, the charismatic goalkeeper’s first duty, and touch of the ball, was to retrieve the ball from the back of his net after just two minutes, Vale’s Scott Henry twisting his way past a broken back four to place an effort just past a wrong-footed Cowe.

Industrious work down the flanks by Scott Fowlie and Ryan Cowie, afterwards, paid dividends when the Burgh struck back after midway through the first-half, Scott Barbour feeding a ball to strike partner Peter Alexander Bruce, the former Peterhead man cooly converting with a flick past Darren McConnachie in the Vale goal.

A battle between Barbour and defender Connor Rennie, meanwhile, began to unfold throughout the rest of the match, the tall Rennie tasked with the job of keeping tabs on the Burgh maestro.

For a second time in the first-half, the Vale went ahead after lax defending at the back, Colin Charlesworth rolling an effort into the far corner, Cowe helpless to prevent the goal after leaving his line in an attempt to sweep up the danger.

The Burgh continued to push for a way back into the game before the first-half whistle, however, and were given a helping hand by referee Calum Spence when William West was brought down in the box, Spence pointing to the spot for a penalty.

Squaring it up, Barbour never looked like missing, and did convert, before getting in the face of Vale’s McConnachie to gloat.

The first-half petered out to bring a close to, as had been expected in the the early afternoon, a good game of football, the second-half proving, in contrast, to be a nightmare for Burgh fans.

Further goals from Martin Charlesworth, Graeme Rodger, and Ricky Wadrop condemned the home side to only their second defeat of 2014. Steven Main, meanwhile, starting from the bench, had been sent off for fouling Martin Charlesworth, leading to Wadrop’s penalty and goal.