Forfar Athletic 3, Motherwell 3

Match Date: Tuesday, September 23 2003
Competition: CIS League Cup 2nd Round
Attendance: 1,108.
 
Motherwell Team (4-4-2):

Marshall, Corrigan, Craigan, Partridge, Hammell, Lasley (Dair 90), Adams, Leitch, Pearson, Clarkson, Craig (Wright 115). 
Subs not used: Corr, Quinn, McDonald.

Yellow Card: Corrigan.

PENALTY PAID BY WOEFUL WELL

Forfar Athletic  3     Motherwell  3
Forfar win 4-2 on penalties AET

MOTHERWELL CONTINUED WHAT HAS TO BE The worst record of all top-flight clubs in the League Cup by tumbling out at the first hurdle. Two divisions below, Forfar played their way into the Third Round and perhaps should have finished the job in regulation time.

It scarcely looked likely that a shock was on the cards as Motherwell tore into the opposition right from the off. A run from Hammel saw the interception from Byers to concede a throw. When taken Leitch was only just to long with his pass to Craig. However, Craig was able to take full advantage of a loose ball inside the box a minute later to slot home at the far post and give Motherwell the lead. The Station Park outfit tried to respond though firstly Corrigan and then Hammel were on hand to clear. Motherwell resumed on the attack with Craig playing in Clarkson whose shot was saved by Brown. The visitors had a let off when Davidson managed to swipe at fresh air from a cross by Henderson. Once again the home hero was Brown who clutched a low drive from Leitch. And he was certainly seeing a lot of the ball, moments later diving to hold a drive from Clarkson. The Fir Parkers came agonisingly close to doubling the lead when Leitch and Clarkson combined to set up Adams and his curling shot wasn't far off target. Forfar's hard-pressed defence then held firm when Pearson had a fierce drive desperately blocked inside the area. 

Motherwell kept up the pressure and Clarkson was unfortunate to find Brown in good form as the home keeper tipped over his shot. The corner fell to Lasley but he drove well over. Gordon Marshall had been kept fairly quiet up to now but he got down to hold a Henderson shot from inside the area. It still looked odds-on that Motherwell would go further ahead. Breaking upfield Craig floated in a terrific cross but there were no takers. Craig the forced a corner but again Brown was on hand to gather unopposed. Leitch and Lasley then combined to find Clarkson but he was unable to gather. There was a contentious decision shortly afterwards when Craigan and Henderson clashed. The Forfar man appeared to kick out at Craigan but Referee McDonald chose to book the Motherwell man and award a free kick. Partridge headed this behind but from the corner no one leapt to challenge Henderson who flicked a header beyond Marshall to level completely against the run of play. Motherwell were stung into action and a pass from Clarkson was sent inches past by Craig. Lasley then found Pearson who was unlucky to see Brown make a terrific save at the expense of a corner which Craigan saw held. The Fir Parkers kept up the pressure and Clarkson should have done better than to miss a free header. Forfar relieved things somewhat by winning a free kick 30 yards out but Motherwell regained possession with Pearson shooting wide with Clarkson free to his right. Clarkson himself then looked to go clear but a poor first touch with Lasley clear inside allowed the move to break down. The youngster then set up Lasley but he volleyed over. The Station Park team could not be discounted and from a Davidson pass Henderson shot inches past. 

Half-time     Forfar Athletic  1     Motherwell  1

An early change for Forfar saw Lowing replace McClune. There perhaps should have been an immediate yellow card for Stewart after he'd caught Leitch late but Referee McDonald waved play on. The home side began the half much the hungrier-looking side and Motherwell failed to heed an early scare when Henderson and Tosh played a one-two with the latter seeing Marshall block well. From the corner Tosh was unmarked to slot beyond Marshall and take the lead. That lead should have lasted all of 60 seconds and only bad luck prevented the scores from being level again. Pearson made a great run to the by line and his cross was powerfully headed towards goal by Craig. It took a terrific Brown save to deny him but Leitch following-up could only send his shot onto the post and the ball was cleared. That miss cost Motherwell dear as the Second Division outfit went further ahead. Tosh gathered the ball wide on the right and sent a shot inside the post with Marshall unable to get down in time to block. This time, however, Motherwell did hit back more or less within a minute. 

Pearson forced a corner which, when it fell to Lasley outside the box, was rocketed high into the net to bring Motherwell right back into it. However, Forfar almost regained their lead when Tosh, looking way offside, was allowed to shoot and although Marshal blocked Davidson could only send his effort wide. Just after Derek Adams had driven past Motherwell levelled the match in spectacular fashion. Stewart conceded a corner which Craig passed onto Pearson and he drove an unstoppable drive into the net. It was almost a complete comeback but a combination of the post then the linesman's flag denied Craig. Motherwell should have had a free kick right on the edge of the box when Lasley was tripped by Rattray but it was play-on. Lasley picked himself up to send a shot well past the post. The Fir Parkers were looking likely to settle the match though following a series of corners the match remained level. Clarkson was then fouled by Sellars though again Referee McDonald chose not to book. Lasley found Partridge but he was adjudged to have fouled Rattray. And another soft free kick for Forfar came some 25 yards out when Hammel and Henderson clashed, though Marshall held the effort. Hammel then set up Lasley but again his shot fell the wrong side of the post. Clarkson was then bundled over by Rattray but the free kick wasted. Forfar passed up a superb chance to steal the match when Davidson crossed for Henderson but somehow the striker failed to connect and Marshall held the ball. With time running out McClune was booked for a trip on Adams before the Motherwell man drove past from 20 yards.

Full Time     Forfar Athletic  3     Motherwell  3

Forfar began the better in extra time with Hammel having to nick in ahead of Henderson who looked set to test Marshall. Clarkson then forced a corner and from it Partridge really should have burst the net from six yards out but incredibly drove over the bar. The home side then burst forward with Henderson but he chose to cross deep with Davidson in space. Forfar made a change, replacing Henderson with Maher. The Fir Parkers should have had a free kick right in front of goals when Craig was clearly pushed over by Lunan but no whistle. The home side were enjoying the better of the play but they were incensed when Tosh won a corner off Hammel only for the Linesman, a yard or two away, to award a goal kick. Shields then had a turn and shot on the edge of the box well saved by Marshall before a bad error by Hammel almost cost Motherwell a costly goal, Marshall managing to deny Maher. Motherwell broke upfield with Pearson gaining a corner which Craig headed wide.

Half Time in Extra Time     Forfar Athletic  3     Motherwell  3

Motherwell's first change came when Jason Dair replaced Keith Lasley. Within seconds Forfar came close twice, firstly Tosh seeing a run and shot go just wide before a free header from a corner going over the bar. A third home change arrived with Lunan replaced by Williams. Motherwell had regained the upper hand but a free kick wasn't so forthcoming despite a clear body check by Byers on Clarkson. The young Motherwell forward picked himself up to send an overhead kick narrowly past from Craig's flick. From a corner at the other end Lowing sent a free header into the arms of Marshall. New boy Dair almost nicked the tie for Motherwell with time running out when her curled a superb shot just inches past the far upright. Motherwell made a late change with Wright replacing Craig and in the last minute Forfar saw a corner cleared by Partridge to set up penalites.

Full Time in Extra Time     Forfar Athletic  3     Motherwell  3

Forfar striker Tosh took and scored the first penalty, with Brown saving Hammel's response. Davidson (Forfar), Dair (Motherwell), Byers (Forfar) and Wright (Motherwell) all scored before Marshall got down to block Sellers shot. However, Brown also managed to save Clarkson's penalty leaving Shields to convert and send Forfar through. 

Motherwell trooped off the field and really must get their act together before facing Hearts in the league.

Forfar Athletic won 4-2 on penalties after extra time

Match Report by Ricky Mullen

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