ONE DAY ONLY SALE!

The official club shop are running a one day only sale on Saturday 31st January.

 

Adult replica shirts ONLY £25!!

Youth replica shirt ONLY £20!!

Ayr United Onesie ONLY £20!!

Youth Tracksuit ONLY £20!!

Buy any jacket from the shop and get the retro strip free!!

And finally buy a bucket hat and get a free mug!!

 

You know where to be this Saturday and the shop will be open from 10am

Dunfermline Match Preview

Ayr United’s search for a win continues when they entertain Dunfermline Athletic at Somerset Park on Saturday. The Honest Men have drawn their last two matches 1-1 but a looking for three points in their battle to avoid relegation.

 

Dunfermline started the season as title favourites but currently find themselves outside the promotion play-offs in fifth place, four points adrift of forth placed Brechin City. John Potter is looking for his first win in charge after succeeding Jim Jefferies in mid-December and went down 2-0 away to Greenock Morton last weekend.

 

Read on for our match preview:

 

Ian says: “I really felt we played well last week. We didn’t have a huge cutting edge however up to 20 yards out a lot of our play was very good. Dunfermline are a good side with some top players and are looking for the playoffs as a minimum however they aren’t on a good run at the moment and we have had them watched. I’m hoping for a few more on the gate and that there’s an atmosphere behind that goal. We have certainly steadied the ship to an extent however we need to turn draws into wins and at home in this league we will look to try and win every game”

 

Team news: Martyn Campbell is out. Peter Murphy is also ruled out however we are hoping he will join next weeks squad.

 

 

Form:

United are without a win in their last 14 matches (included the Peterhead match subsequently deemed void), the club’s worst run since 1978.

 

Dunfermline are without a victory in their last seven matches. The Pars have taken just two points from a possible 15 on the road since narrowly winning at Somerset Park in October.

 

Head-to-Head (at Somerset Park): Ayr United wins – 22 Draws – 15 Dunfermline Athletic wins – 17

 

United are without a win the last nine meetings between the sides.

 

Last Meeting: There were four goals in 11 first-half minutes when the sides met at East End Park at the start of January, three of them for the Pars. A goal apiece in the second-half meant the final score was 4-2.

 

On this day: in 1931, Ayr United beat Murrayfield Amateurs 1-0 in the second round of the Scottish Cup. More recently, United drew 2-2 with Raith Rovers at Somerset Park in 2009. Mark Campbell opened the scoring for the visitors in the 6th minute and Rovers were 2-up after 9 minutes but an Iain Davidson own goal and a equaliser from Scott Agnew levelled the scores.

 

Saturday’s game is the Honest Men’s 500th in the month of January, the first being a 5-1 win over Galston in the Ayrshire League in 1911. We have won 200, drawn 115 and lost 184 of the previous 499.

 

Match Officials: Referee: Mat Northcroft

Assistant Referee 1: Michael Banks Assistant Referee 2: Kevin McElhinney

 

Match Info:

Admission

Adults – £15

Concessions (OAPS, Students & u16s) – £8

Parent & Child – £18 via Gate

Stenhousemuir 1 Ayr 1

Stenhousemuir 1 v 1 Ayr United

 

Both of these teams were under no illusion of how important a win could be with only two points separating the sides going into this bottom of the table clash.  The form guides didn’t auger well either with Ayr still looking for a win after 12 attempts and Stenhousemuir unable to win at home in their last four games.

 

This poor form was obviously at the forefront in the minds of both managers with new signings being added to the respective squads this week. Ian McCall welcomed new signing Adam Blakeman to Somerset Park earlier in the week while Stenhousemuir’s Scott Booth made two signings late on Friday as Craig Sutherland and Paul McMullen joined the Ochilview side.

 

It was Stenhousemuir who had started the brighter and in the opening stages had the bulk of possession but failed to create any meaningful chances against a comfortable looking Ayr defence.

 

That was to change in 19mins however as a lapse of concentration from United allowed Paul McMullan to score from close range, after a misunderstanding in the Ayr defence, allowed him to latch on to a loose pass and open the scoring.

 

The loss of the early goal had a positive effect on United as they immediately went looking for an equaliser which they should have had in 22mins. A neat give and go between Forrest and Blakeman saw Forrest through on goal but from just 12 yards out he blasted over the bar.

 

Ayr were looking the stronger side by the half hour mark as they searched for an equaliser and that came in spectacular fashion in 32mins. Ayr were pressing down the left hand side with Forrest and Donald before the youngster decided not to play the obvious pass. Instead he cut inside and unleashed a wonder strike from fully 25 yards that left the Stenny keeper Fleming grasping at thin air and put Ayr level at 1-1.

 

Stenhousemuir tried to gain more control of possession after losing the equaliser and they caused some problems, making use of Paul McMullan and Joshua Watt’s pace, but no further clear cut chances were created as the sides went in at half time all square.

 

United started the second half in a positive mood winning a corner in the first 50 seconds of the restart. They then made a tactical change up front replacing Ryan Donnelly with Craig Beattie to provide a more physical presence in attack.

 

This change of tactic provided United with more possession as the Stenhousemuir defence kept a wary eye on the experienced Beattie and the goal threat of Forrest.

 

Unfortunately for Ayr they were unable to convert all this possession into chances and appeared to lack a significant cutting edge going forward. Brian Gilmour did go close to breaking the deadlock with a curling free kick in 69mins but his effort curled just the wrong side of the post.

 

With 10mins left to play substitute Scott McLaughlin ended a good move with a drive from the edge of the box but his shot was too straight and was comfortably held by Stenny keeper Fleming.

 

In the end a point each was probably a fair reflection on the number of chances created by both sides but United and Ian McCall both know that they need to turn possession into chances and goals to give themselves an opportunity of moving clear of the relegation drop zone.

 

Ayr United

Hutton; Devlin; Gilmour; Neill; Murray; Crawford; McGovern; Blakeman; Donald; Forrest; Donnelly

Substitutes: McLaughlin; Slane; Beattie; McCracken; Nisbet; Shirkie; Newman (GK)

Stenhousemuir

Fleming; McCormack (Trialist); Lithgow; McMillan; Summers; Millar; McMullan; Hodge; McMenamin; Sutherland; Watt Substitutes: Meechan; Faulds; Fiortheringham; Gallacher; Eddington; Grehan; Smith (GK)

 

Attendance – 651

Match Report: David Kennedy (AUmedia)

Stenhousemuir Match Preview

United are on the road on Saturday, travelling east to face Stenhousemuir. Ian McCall’s first home match in charge ended in a draw last time out but there are no shortage of incentives to record a first win in four months this weekend: three points at Ochilview will see the Honest Men climb out the relegation play-off spot at the expense of Scott Booth’s side.

 

Stenhousemuir were narrowly defeated 1-0 away to Forfar Athletic last weekend.

 

Read on for our match preview:

 

Ian says: “We are really looking forward to Saturdays game as it gives us the huge incentive of moving up a place with a win followed by two home games on the bounce. If we can win on Saturday I feel we can start looking up the way. We have had Stenhousemuir watched and I also know a few of their players so we know how they are likely to play. Our players have impressed me in training and theres a freshness there now that we have a few new faces. We are looking for them to have gained confidence from the way they finished the game last week.”

Team news: Peter Murphy has started light training and should be back within a fortnight. Martyn Campbell is still out and Kevin McKinlay has left the club. Sean McKenzie and Peter McGill are both out with injuries. Craig Beattie is back in the squad for Saturday and Ryan Nisbet has been added to the squad after impressing in the development league.

 

Brian Gilmour is set to make his 50th appearance for the club.

 

Form:

It is 14 matches since Stenny’s last draw – they have won four and lost ten since, including their last three games. The Warriors have lost their last four at home.

 

United are without a win in 13 games. United ended their last 13 game winless streak with a 4-0 away win versus Morton in March 2006. Paul Weaver, Keiran McAnespie and Gareth Wardlaw (2) were on the scoresheet.

 

Head-to-Head (League): Ayr United wins – 34 Draws – 14 Stenhousemuir wins – 26

 

Five of the last 10 meetings between the sides have ended 1-1. United have just one win in 12 versus the Warriors.

 

Last Meeting: Stenny’s 3-2 win at Somerset Park in December proved to be Mark Roberts’s last in charge of the club. Colin McMenamin netted a hat-trick for the visitors and has 11 goals for the season. It was a 1-1 draw when the sides met at Ochilview at the start of September.

 

On this day: United’s last fixture on this date was in 2004 away to Ross County. The match ended 1-1 with Stewart Kean equalising in the second-half. Ayr have a 50% win rate on January 24th .

 

Match Officials: Referee: Gavin Ross

Assistant Referee 1: Gavin Harris Assistant Referee 2: Matthew MacDermid

 

Match Info:

Admission

Adults – £12

Concessions – £7

 

Travel

The River Cottage Ayr United Travel Club bus leaves at 11.45am. Cost is £10. Seats from Tam on 07585 838685 or Jamie on 07792747354.

McKinlay released

We can confirm that Kevin McKinlay has been released from his contract by mutual consent. We would like to thank Kevin for his efforts while at Somerset Park and wish him all the best for the future.

New signing!

We are delighted to announce the signing of Adam Blakeman, 23, from Hyde in the English Conference North.

Assistant Manager John Henry said “Adam has a great left foot and an excellent range of passing. I had him in the Bolton reserve team and he is excellent from set plays. Adam has a great knowledge of the game and that shows in the way he plays. He can compete physically and also has an excellent shot on him. The gaffer saw him when he was playing at Bolton and was very impressed.”

Adam was with Liverpool for 7 years as a youth before moving to Bolton. From there he has played 61 times for Hyde scoring 8 goals. He primarily plays as a left back but can also play in midfield.

Ayr United 1 Morton 1

Ayr United 1 v 1 Morton

So in the end Ian McCall was unable to end Ayr’s poor home record with a win in his first game in charge at Somerset Park, against visitors Morton, as he attempted to help the club win at home for the first time since August 23rd 2014.However in only his second game in charge he has given the Ayr fans hope that a resurgence is just around the corner.

The United fans left the old ground in a much happier frame of mind as they saw Ayr grind out a 1-1 draw with second top Morton after a determined rather than classy display.

Ian McCall made two changes from last week’s line up dropping youngster Craig McCracken to the bench and replacing the injured Kevin McKinlay with Brian Gilmour. He also decided against using last week’s 4-1-4-1 formation and instead changed to 3-5-2.

Morton had the bulk of possession and chances in the first half as Ayr took time to adjust to the new 3-5-2 formation, riding their luck on a few occasions, as Peter MacDonald spurned a number of opportunities to put the visitors ahead.

His best chance came in the 21st min when he broke clean through from what looked like an offside position. Fortunately though he was unable to compose himself and his attempted lob drifted aimlessly over David Hutton’s bar landing in amongst the Ayr fans to the ironic jeers ringing in his ears, as only this week Ayr had also attempted to sign him.

Although Morton had the best of the early chances Ayr gradually came more and more into the game and in 37mins they took the lead. Ayr’s latest signing Craig Murray was a constant threat on the right flank with his pace and energy and it was through one of his lung bursting runs he managed to win Ayr a corner. Brian Gilmour delivered the corner and Morgyn Neill attacked the set piece forcing keeper Adam to punch clear. He was unable to get any great distance and when the ball was returned back in to the penalty box the young central defender lifted a shot beyond the Morton keeper to open his account and give Ayr a one nil lead going into the break.

Ayr were buoyed by their half-time lead as they started the second but all the good work was undone after just 2mins of the restart. Ayr ignored the earlier warning signs as danger man Peter MacDonald pounced on a defensive error to equalise for Morton. Morgyn Neil misjudged a long ball from deep and as it landed on the edge of the Ayr box MacDonald quickly latched on to the loose ball. He controlled the ball with his right foot before quickly shifting to his left and slotting past Hutton to make it 1-1.

Ayr went through a shaky spell after Morton equalised but eventually regained their composure and gradually began to push Morton further back in to their own half as the second half progressed.

There was little to choose between the sides as the game approached the final quarter of an hour but in 76mins Morton’s Thomas O’Ware was presented with a great opportunity from a corner but his free header from 6 yards was just too high and it cleared the bar. Ayr retaliated straight away and Allan Forrest forced Adam into a good save with a shot from 20 yards.

Late on David Hutton was forced into a double save and United almost stole it with the last kick of the ball.  But all in all it wasn’t a bad day as Ayr gained a point on rivals Stirling and Stenhousemuir, who both lost, as they attempt to climb the table.

Ayr United

Hutton; Murray Devlin; Neill; Donald; McGovern; Crawford; McLaughlin; Gilmour; Forrest; Donnelly.

Substitutes: Slane; McCracken; McKenzie; Shirkie; McGill; Newman

Greenock Morton

Adam; Kilday; O’Ware; Lamie; Russell;McCluskey; Miller; McKee; Forbes; MacDonald; McCluskey Substitutes: Pepper; Caldwell; Crighton; Milojevic Bjekovic; Ferris; Knight; Gaston

Attendance – 1217

Report: AUmedia

Morton Match Preview

On Saturday, Ian McCall takes charge of Ayr United for the first time at Somerset Park when Greenock Morton are the visitors. A number of new faces are expected as the Honest Men look to record a hat-trick of victories over the Ton this season.

Morton came from 1-0 down to beat Stenhousemuir 3-2 last weekend at Ochilview, with all five goals coming in the second-half. The three points lifted Ton above Forfar Athletic into second position in the table. Jim Duffy has moved to strengthen his squad in recent weeks, signing goalkeeper Grant Adam and strikers Ross Caldwell and Peter McDonald. Ross Forbes has joined from Dunfermline with Andrew Barrowman heading in the opposite direction.

Read on for our match preview:

Ian says: “Its a great home game for us to start with. Ayr and Morton are two of the real traditional Scottish football clubs. Like ourselves Morton also have a good fanbase and will bring a few down. We have different targets. At the moment they are looking to win the league whereas we are looking to start winning games again and getting away from the bottom. I am very much looking forward to it and I am really hoping for the team to backed by a large noisy home support, that will make a big difference. We have had Morton watched however this is our home game so its about what we do.”

 Team news: Peter Murphy, Martyn Campbell and Craig Beattie are out. Craig Murray joins the squad and we are hopeful of one more addition before Saturday.

Form:

Ayr are looking to end a run of nine matches at home – and 12 matches overall – without a win.

Morton have won their last two games on the road, their only victories in their last seven.

Head-to-Head (League at Somerset Park): Ayr United wins – 37 Draws – 14 Morton wins – 17

It is seven games between the sides at Somerset Park since both teams scored in the same match.

Last Meeting: Ayr have two 1-0 wins over Morton this season. Captain Scott McLaughlin scored against his former club at Cappielow in October and Ryan Donnelly was the match winner on the opening day of the league season at Somerset Park.

 On this day: Ayr United have played seven matches at Somerset Park on this date in history, scoring 29 goals – an average of over four-per-game. In 1931, the Honest Men beat Clackmannan 11-2 and recorded an 8-2 victory over Montrose in 1959.

Match Officials: Referee: Colin Steven

Assistant Referee 1: John McCrossan Assistant Referee 2: Lloyd Wilson

Match Info:

Admission

Adults – £15

OAP’s/Under 16’s and students – £8

Parent & Child Gate – £18

New Signing!

We are delighted to announce the signing of Craig Murray,  on loan to the end of the season.

Manager Ian McCall said “Craig can play right back, right wing back or in midfield. I have watched him a few times and he has great energy. They think very highly of him up there. When you have a small squad its imperative to have players that are versatile and can play a few different positions. Craig was in the Aberdeen first team two weeks ago and played the 90 minutes. Craig’s hungry and enthusiastic and is exactly the type of player we need.”

Craig, 21,  is primarily a right back and was voted Aberdeen’s under 20s player of the year last season and has also played at first team level since Derek McInnes took charge.

He is described as having ‘amazing energy levels’ and played twice in Aberdeen’s run to lifting the league cup last season.

Craig was given his first team debut in December 2012 under Craig Brown and most recently Craig played the full game in Aberdeen’s 1-0 win at Inverness on the 28th of December.

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