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Forfar Athletic 3 Ayr United 1

Sunday, 20 March 2016 09:21

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A ferocious attacking performance from Forfar Athletic helped lift them out of the league’s bottom two as the Loons ran roughshod over Ayr United.

Andy Ryan scored either side of Steven Craig’s smashing finish as the Loons moved eighth in League One, level on points with Brechin City but ahead of them due to a vastly superior goal difference.

It was a result that Gary Bollan’s side have been itching to achieve, with recent displays lacking everything but the kind of razor-sharp finishing that was on display on Saturday.

Ryan put the hosts ahead in quick fashion, blasting the ball into the roof of the net from a narrow angle after receiving a lovely whipped cross from Danny Denholm.
Denholm then went close with a 20 yard effort before Alan Forrest forced a corner.
The movement of the Loons’ forwards was causing the visitors a lot of problems but it was the Honest Men who were next to find the back of the net inside the quarter hour mark, Stevenson ghosting through an absent Forfar defence to rattle the ball across goal and in at the far post.
A sickening clash of heads at a corner saw Paddy Boyle and Ross McCrorie leave the field bloodied to be replaced by Gerry McLaughlin and Mickey Donald.
The game resumed after a lengthy stoppage and Gareth Rodger had to be sharp at the back to stop United taking the lead through Craig Moore.
Trouten then had an effort on goal but it was deflected wide by some last gasp defending, the ball striking Michael Kennedy on the back.

HALF TIME: Forfar Athletic 1 Ayr United 1

Trialist Scott Smith came on for Forfar at half-time in place of Bryan Hodge, making his second debut for the club after enjoying a brief loan spell at the Loons last season.
Denholm almost had the third goal of the day but his floating header was just wide following Gavin Swankie’s free kick.
But it was Ryan who put the Loons into the lead as he rifled home from Smith’s cut-back pass, the ex-Dundee United midfielder taking a long ball down with a gorgeous first touch.
Craig added the third when he hit a ball over the top from Smith into the net with a lovely looping half volley.
Forfar continued to probe away and they looked as potent as have all season, the movement of Ryan and Craig providing a terrific platform for Denholm, Omar Kader and Swankie to play off.
And though the Honest Men rallied back and penned the hosts in for the final 10 minutes, Forfar held on for a massive victory in the League One relegation race.

FULL TIME: Forfar Athletic 3 Ayr United 1

Match report by Scott Binnie

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