WOSFL - Division Three
v
Sat 5 November 2022
Score: 2 - 3

Match Report

Carluke travelled to local rivals Lanark United for this derby match. Lanark, who are in the middle of a good season, also opened their new stand today following the destruction of their previous stand through storm damage. This was always going to be a tough game for Carluke but it was made even harder with injuries to key players and a stomach bug which had accounted for another 6 absentees.

That said the 12 who got stripped were more than capable of competing as long as injuries during the game were avoided which turned out to be the case.

With the rain finally abating the game got underway with Lanark getting into their stride early doors. A bit of slackness in the Rovers defence allowed their No10 to run through on goal before shooting the ball low into the corner. It looked as if it was going to just sneak in until Josh McGill in the Carluke goal pulled off a wonderful finger tip save to see the ball just past the post.

After this initial fright Carluke settled into the game and for the first 20 minutes there was nothing between the teams with neither keeper called into action. It was therefore unfortunate for Caruke when an innocuous cross ball into the box bounced awkwardly in front of Christy Lawlor and hit his arm. There had not been any danger and the Ref’s decision to give a penalty simply because of a bad bounce seemed harsh. Given it was and duly converted by Lanark to make the score 1-0.

This was a setback for Carluke but they kept plugging away as did Lanark with neither team having much to show for their endeavours. Then just before halftime Carluke got the break they craved in front of goal. Good interplay between Kane and Evans saw Evans slide the ball past through the Lanark defence for the hardworking Connor Curran who latched on to the resultant pass and slid it through the legs of the Lanark Keeper to make the score 1-1.

This equaliser seemed to wake Lanark up and within a minute their No9 had rattled the bar with an excellent effort from 22 yards. However Carluke could have taken the lead right on halftime when a shot by Josh Bell was well saved at point blank range by the Lanark Keeper.

The second half got underway with Lanark making a couple of changes to bolster their midfield. The change seemed to have the desired effect as they dominated the early exchanges. In fact their left back had 2 opportunities but both efforts were badly skewed and gave no real concern to Josh McGill in the Carluke goal.

Lanark continued to press Carluke and it was no real surprise when they regained the lead on the hour mark. The ball was fed wide on the right and an excellent cross saw the Lanark No9 get in front of his marker and rise to head the ball powerfully into the net via the underside of the bar. 2-1 to Lanark. At this point it looked a long way back for Carluke but changes to formation for both teams turned the tide in Carluke’s favour. Dom Small was pushed more centrally and Christy Lawlor was moved from defence into a more attacking role. Carluke started to play with a bit more urgency and nearly equalised when a corner from the left was headed narrowly wide by Tayler Jessimer.

Then in the 75th minute good play down the left saw the ball break to Mark O’Reilly and his effort was knocked over the bar by a Lanark defender. A minute later Dom Small curled one just past the upright but he wasn’t to be denied and in the 77th minute he got his goal. The ball broke to him at the edge of the box. He fired it at goal and the ball took a slight deflection through a few players before settling in the bottom corner. 2-2.

It was now Carluke whose tails were up as they went in search of a winner with renewed belief. The equaliser had taken some of the life out of Lanark’s legs and Carluke were finishing the stronger. It was therefore no surprise when Carluke took the lead in the 81st minute for the first time in the match.

Good play in the midfield saw Connor Curran slide the ball through the legs of a Lanark defender finding Christy Lawlor clear on goal. He kept his composure and coolly slid the ball under the keeper to make the score 2-3 in favour of Carluke. The goal was celebrated wildly by Carluke as it was difficult to see a way back for Lanark so late in the game. This turned out to be the case and for all their efforts in the last 10 minutes Lanark never really troubled the Carluke goal. Final score was 2-3 to Carluke Rovers.

This was an important result for Carluke as they battle to climb up the table. The man of the match this week, as sponsored by Westcoast Storage Centre in East Kilbride, was Christy Lawlor. He gave away the penalty, didn’t let his head go down, played well throughout and popped up with the winner.

Next Saturday Carluke take a break from league duty with a West Of Scotland Cup tie against Finnart at the John Cumming Stadium. Note the earlier kickoff time at 1:30pm.

Match Report by Steve Kane

 

 

Westcoast Storage and Removal Limited
Rovers Man of the Match
Christy Lawlor

 

Photography by Kevin Ramage