Ayr United Lose out In Lacklustre Ramsden Cup Affair

Ayr United failed in their attempts to reach the semi finals of the Ramsdens cup on Sunday, losing 1-0 nil to third division side Annan Athletic.

by Marc RosebladeBookmark and Share  
After the recent excellent displays by the Ayr team, the fans hopes were high of a victory in this match, hopeful of a semi final berth in the cup.

All did not go as planned though and a lethargic display by the players that Brian Reid had promised to pick squandered the opportunity to progress in the competition with a lacklustre performance that the players themselves will be highly disappointed in.

With Academy players Roddy Paterson and Gareth Armstrong joining ex Academy players Ross Robertson and Jonathan Tiffoney in the starting 11, the team was youthful but with sprinkles of experience dotted around in the form of John Robertson and Alex Burke.

The match started off slowly with very little to get the heart racing and only a couple of opportunities for either side littered an otherwise dull first 45 minutes.

The second half was somewhat more entertaining with Ayr playing a more passing style of football, perhaps to penetrate the Annan defence, perhaps as a precursor to a new form of football that Brian has been testing at training. Whatever the reason for the style of play, it didn't stop Annan taking the lead on 58 minutes with a cross come shot that seemed to be deflected in at close range past the diving Cuthberts hands.

Ayr made an immediate change with Tiffoney leaving the field with McGowan coming on to add a pace and pizazz to the wide areas that had so far been missing.

Ayr were soon to take the match by the scruff of the neck and a Connolly lob to Paterson was headed down to Moffat but couldn't keep his shot down and watched as it sailed over the bar.

The signs were good for the home side as they pushed for an equalizer and McGowan was making an impression on the left wing area especially his in swinging corners.

Marko Roberts was brought on to try and add some experience to the front line and it was young Roddy Paterson that was unfortunately hooked for the club captain. The change was not through any mistakes made by the man from Carrick, it was the sheer need for someone expected to score goals and has a proven track record at this level.

Both Roberts and McGowan soon linked up from the latters corner but the strikers header flew over the bar much to the relief of the stagnant Annan keeper.

Ayr were not having it all there own way and probably should have went two behind but for a helping hand from the left hand upright from a wicked shot that had left Cuthbert stranded in the goal area. fortunately for the home side the ball trundled along the goal area and was cleared from danger before any waiting Annan players could collect the rebound.

Ross Robertson, who had been fairly quiet in the first half, was now much more influential with the changes in personnel and went within inches of scoring his sides equalizer with a bulleted header that was strikingly similar to last weeks winner against Raith Rovers at Somerset, only this time his header went over.

And possibly the best chance for Ayr to score came when Summersgill in the Annan goal dropped the ball into the path of Moffat but his snapshot effort drifted past the right hand post much to his own disbelief.

In the final minute of play, Ayr's keeper Cuthbert even made the journey forward and rose above everyone else to meet a corner from McGowan but the keepers header went high and wide.

The game ended without any more opportunities and it now sees Annan progress to the semi finals along with Livingston, Falkirk and Hamilton.

Ayr now look forward to next weeks away match to Morton at Cappielow.

Marc Roseblade is a Contributor for Bleacher Report as well as Not Just Scottish Football and youth development reporter for Ayr United Football Academy. All quotes are obtained first-hand unless otherwise stated.