MATCH v FORT WILLIAM FC, SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN SATURDAY 19 FEBRUARY KO 3PM
Contrary to the report in the Strathy we are not travelling to Fort William for this week’s Breedon Highland League match ( see here for reason) but we welcome them again to Seafield Park. After our previous encounter this season on a very wet and cold October night a thrilling 7-3 victory for The Jags ensued, but with some major changes for Fort William over the past few weeks, it promises to be a very exciting and hard fought game and given our respective league positions ….a real six-pointer.
However, as I write this it has been snowing all day in Grantown and with the forecast of temperatures below freezing it looks very unlikely the game will be able to go ahead. So that will be another game to add to our backlog which will have to be played over the next couple of months. It is going to be very difficult for Charlie and the squad – I reckon most weeks we will probably be playing Saturday, Wednesday, Saturday.
The Jackpot of the Club Lottery this week stands at £2200.00 – so if you want to play online – play here – Good Luck and Thank You.
Away match v Formartine United FC North Lodge Park, Pitmedden (AB4 7PA) KO 3pm
This week, weather permitting (again), we’re on the road to Pitmedden and a Breedon Highland League match against our friends at Formartine United FC.
Formartine joined the Highland League in 2009 at the same time as Turriff United and ourselves, and have enjoyed the greater success between the three clubs, but we hope that the football gods will shine on us this weekend……. but with Formartine lying sixth in the league the task may be quite a difficult one!
This week Charlie and the squad visited Elgin City’s Gleaner Arena again this season, for a friendly against the League Two’s under-twenty team supplemented with a few first team fringe players. The quickly organised game was only the second game we have played in almost two months.
The exercise was successful despite losing and it also gave JJ Wardrope and Ewan Neil, both back from injury, a run out. Both should be in the squad for Saturday.
Charlie said in The Strathy that the first forty-five minutes were pretty even but as the game went on the difference in match fitness told.
£2100 is the jackpot this week in the Club’s Lottery and if you don’t have a ticket and want to play online – play here.
Even though we are having a relatively mild winter, all weathers seem to come on a Friday or Saturday and as we had snow and freezing temperatures here in Grantown yesterday, unfortunately, after a 9.30am pitch inspection today’s match had to be called off.
Home Game vs Fraserburgh FC – Seafield Park, Grantown Saturday 5 February 2022 – KO 3pm
Arriving at Seafield Park this Saturday we welcome the team, officials and supporters of Breedon Highland League leaders Fraserburgh FC.
Manager Charlie Brown is under no illusion that this will be a difficult game, our last at The Broch’s Bellslea Park resulted in a seven goal defeat with no reply…. but this time we hope – and as he says in this weeks local paper The Strathy – our game plan is to play as well as we can for as long as possible and with football being football hopefully get a good result, especially after our last outing against Deveronvale where a much improved second half performance gave us a share of the points.
The Broch are proving to be the best in the league this season, much like Fraserburgh loon Bill Gibb was in the fashion industry in the seventies and eighties.
We would ask supporters to park their cars in the adjoining Golf Club car park instead of the grass area directly beside the entry gate – thanks.
The Club would like to commend our main sponsors McGowan Environment Engineering Ltd on entering a partnership with the rewilding charity, SCOTLAND – The Big Picture, to support the return of European Cranes to the Cairngorms for the first time in five hundred years, again, showing McGowans’s commitment to the environment.
The Club Lottery reaches £2000 for the winning ticket prize this Sunday – please play online here.
January 1 Welcome to the second year of the newsletter and a happy New Year to everyone. It has got underway with the news that our game on Monday January 3 at Lossiemouth has been postponed due to a Covid outbreak amongst the players and staff at Lossie. We wish them all well.
January 3 All bar two of the games in the Breedon Highland League were postponed due to Covid, the games that went ahead were at The Haughs Turriff who lost 3-2 to Wick Academy and a thriller at Glebe Park, Brechin. The league leaders Fraserburgh were in town and were 3 goals down in the opening 20 minutes before a remarkable turnaround when The Broch pulled back to 3-3 on 87 minutes before goals on 93 and 96 minutes kept them top of the table by five points from Inveruries Locos. What an advert for the league.
January 4 The Club announced that 17-year-old forward Ethan Cairns has been recalled by Inverness Caledonian Thistle. Co-Vid call offs and the weather meant he was never able to get a good run in the team and we wish him all the best in the future.
Dylan Lawrence, a young striker from Elgin City has joined us on a twelve-month loan. Heavy snow and freezing temperatures overnight have already put Saturday’s six-pointer with Turriff United in doubt, with the worry of Covid in the background.
January 6 A further inspection of the pitch and surrounding area were made, and it was decided to call off the game with Turriff. This allowed league secretary Rod Houston to arrange for Turriff to play Inverurie Locos at The Haughs on Saturday in a Breedon Highland League fixture.
January 8 Where there is a will there is hopefully a way but alas the re-arranged game at The Haughs fell to a combination of snow, frost and Covid. Preparations now begin for the Jags next game, which is at Kynoch Park Keith on Saturday January 15. The weather forecast looks a bit more promising over the next seven days with milder air moving into the region. It is 28 days since our last game at Wick.
January 13 With the weather remaining mild and snow and frost the players had a change of training scenery when they had a training session last Saturday at Nairn beach. A nearly full squad are available for selection for the visit to Keith.
January 15 Another disappointing performance from the Jags as Keith celebrated their 1,200th Highland League win comfortably 5-1. A goal down in twenty minutes, Strathspey played their way back into the game with a neat finish from Craig MacKenzie on 30 minutes. That was the best it was for the Jags as the Maroons took complete control for the rest of the game. Charlie Brown had no excuses and was frustrated at the lack of passion from the players.
January 20 Team manager Charlie Brown has emphasised to the players that the defensive mistakes in recent games is costing them points and goals as the season moves into the last three months when points and wins are needed to consolidate league positions. Over the last six days in the Strathspey area the weather has remained mild for this time of the year and the club are very hopeful that Saturday’s visit of Deveronvale will go ahead. The pitch is inspected and worked on most days.
January 22 At last some good news and of more importance our first point since the win over Fort William back on October 6 last year. Deveronvale took the lead on forty four minutes through another defensive mix up and we all thought here we go again but credit to team for their very good second half performance. The Jags hit the woodwork with a free kick from James McShane midway through the first half. As the second half unfolded the Jags continued to push for the equaliser and it came in injury time through Kris Duncan assisted by Joe Cuthbert. The result has given everyone at the club a lift and let us hope for a similar performance on January 29 when we make the short trip to MacKessack Park, Rothes.
January 26 Defender Andrew MacLean has joined Alness United on a one-month loan and midfielder Stephen Rennie has been placed on the transfer list. Andrew has made two appearances and two as substitute. Stephen has made fourteen appearances and one as substitute. Rejoining us from Elgin City on loan for the rest of the season is Jake Thompson.
January 28 The club today agreed to cancel the loan of midfielder Kane Davies currently with us from Rothes. Kane has made seven appearances and two as substitute.
January 29 At 0910 the Highland League issued a statement that all games scheduled for today have been postponed due to the prevailing weather conditions and the forecast that the afternoon weather could lead to late postponements. Attention now turns to the visit to Seafield Park of league leaders Fraserburgh who are involved in an exciting tussle for the title with Buckie Thistle, Brechin City, Inverurie Loco Works, Brora Rangers and Rothes. It is going to be a good finish to the season at both ends of the table.
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AWAY MATCH Vs ROTHES FC AT MACKESSACK PARK, ROTHES KO. 3PM
This week we’re on our travels again, this time along the A95 for a Breedon Highland League match at one of our nearest clubs, geographically speaking, to visit our good friends at Rothes’ Mackessack Park ( AB38 7BX) in the heart of whisky country. Rothes at the moment are having a good season and sit sixth in the Breedon Highland League on forty four points so it will be a daunting task for us to come away with all three points – but football is football. Hopefully we’ll have a fully fit squad for Charlie to pick from.
Last week in a hard fought match against mid-table Deveronvale at Seafield Park, Kris Duncan equalised in the 88th minute to give the Jags a point which delighted the home fans, and, which according to all concerned seemed to be a fair result. This was our first point in ages, thanks to CoVid and postponements, and hopefully we can add a good few more although we now enter another series of exceptionally tough games. Manager Charlie Brown made a few changes to the starting eleven and switched the team around culminating in a good second half performance especially in the final twenty minutes. As ever we thank the local paper The Strathy for their continued support and you can read all about the game here.
PLAYER NEWS We have resigned Jake Thompson on loan from Elgin City until the end of the season.
Kane Davies has returned to his parent club Rothes FC.
Our Club Lottery jackpot this week is £1900.00 – so if you don’t already have a ticket you can play online here – thanks very much for supporting the club.
Home Game at Seafield Park v Deveronvale FC Saturday 22 January 2022 – 3pm kick off
Looks like a tasty encounter this week at Seafield Park, as the Jags play their first home game since the sixth of November. It is a Breedon Highland League encounter against our friends from Banff, Deveronvale FC.
As we have said before, hopefully we can now start a steady run of games as it has been hard for boss Charlie Brown, his management team and the boys getting game time over the past couple of months thanks to the weather and CoVid issues – but, fingers crossed and with some good weather we, hopefully, will start putting some points on the board and are able to start climbing the league.
Last week we had a disappointing performance, according to Charlie in the Strathy, the local paper, in a 5-1 defeat at Keith our lone scorer was Craig Mackenzie.
Would spectators at the game respect Co-Vid rulings and we would like for supporters with cars to please use the Golf Club car park which is adjacent to Seafield Park – again we thank the Golf Club for letting us use their parking facilities during the winter months.
As ever we wish the Jags all the best.
As you can imagine over the next couple of months we are going to be very busy at Seafield Park with home fixtures, especially midweek as we try to fulfil our league programme. With this in mind we will only have a couple of days in some instances to repair the pitch and ready it for the next match – so if there are any supporters or any one who would like to give the committee some help in this it would be most grateful – usually its a 9.30 start on a Monday/Tuesday after a Saturday game or a Thursday/Friday after a midweek one.
Depending on how many of us are available we should hopefully be finished by lunchtime and all you need is a garden fork and a pair of wellies….and warm clothing if there’s a nip in the air!.
Phone Donly McLeod – 07709 990 286 for timings if you can make it – it would really be a great help! Thank you.
And….our weekly reminder about the Club Lottery – this week the jackpot is £1800.00 – play here.
This week we travel to Keith for our Breedon Highland League match against Keith FC at Kynoch Park (AB55 5EB)
Charlie and the boys spent last weekend training on the dunes at Nairn beach – according to them all it was most enjoyable and may be repeated in the future. Hopefully that’s put them all in good stead for the Saturday’s game which will be our first competitive game in 2022 and our first for a month. We wish the team all the best and hope they come back with 3 points, and if you’re going to the game….. stay safe.
Unfortunately this Saturday’s home game with Turriff United in the Breedon Highland League has had been postponed. Seafield Park is still frozen ….so that’ll be a month since we played our last competitive game due to either weather or co-vid . We just hope that next week all is well in the world so we can travel to Keith and be able to play a game of football!!.
From the Elgin City FC twitter feed on January 2
We are delighted to announce 18 year old striker Dylan Lawrence has signed his first pro contract. The forward is contracted to the Club until 2023. The youngster will now join Strathspey Thistle on a Season long loan to gain some more game time.
Welcome to Strathspey Thistle FC Dylan….. and we hope you are ultra successful here…
Ethan Cairns has been recalled to Inverness Thistle after joining us on loan last summer – we wish him all the best in his footballing career and thank him very much for what he did here at Seafield Park.
However – the Club Lottery continues and last Sunday (9th) we had our first online success – Stephen Matheson from Grantown won the £100 prize. This week the top prize is £1600. So please go online and please support the Club by playing. Just click here.
December 2 We welcome Steve Rattray who has joined the club to work with the team management as both match-day physio and part of the coaching staff.
December 4 We were able to arrange at short notice a friendly against an Elgin City XI at the new football complex next to their Borough Briggs ground. The pitch is 4G and the facilities are really impressive. Use will be made of the complex seven days a week.
December 10 John Campbell will succeed Rod Houston as the Breedon Highland League’s new secretary, replacing Rod at the end of the season. Rod has been secretary for six years and has been a big help to me personally since I joined Strathspey. John is 53 and from Lossiemouth. He was a referee in the SHFL and the Scottish League and has been CEO of the Scottish Welfare Football Association for the last ten years.
December 11 After receiving a call from Wick FC’s secretary that the game was on we left Grantown and Inverness and headed north on the A9. A break in the journey was made at Golspie before arriving at Harmsworth Park just as the weather started to change for the worst. Conditions were difficult for both sides with the Jags more than holding their own only to concede a penalty right on half-time which Wick converted. To compound our problems we lost goalkeeper Robbie Donaldson to a straight red card two minutes into the second half. Andrew Skinner took over in goal and was outstanding considering the pressure he and the team were under.
It was a long journey home with thoughts turning to the visit of Forres Mechanics next Saturday, weather permitting.
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December 13 The search was now on for a replacement keeper for the next game as Michael MacCallum has a broken finger and it is not known when he will be fit.
The weather in the early part of the week was mild and the pitch, after rolling, was in good condition. Grantown Golf Club have given us permission to use their car park as an overflow if we need to in order to protect the grassed area running from the main entrance to the Golf Club fence.
December 18 As the weather has changed and snow and frost are forecast a pitch inspection was arranged for Friday afternoon at 4pm and again at 10am on the morning of the match. A frozen pitch meant the game was called off, much to everyone’s disappointment and the long range forecast leading up to the holiday game with Clacnacuddin at Seafield Park also doesn’tlook promising.
December 23 We have allowed Andrew MacLean to join Alness United on loan for a week and have signed Ryan Hunter, formerly of Fort William, as a one game replacement for the suspended Robbie Donaldson.
At a meeting of the Highland League instructions were received that all signed players are to test daily using lateral flow testing kits and sending the results to the club. The club also decided to suspend boardroom and paying guests hospitality in order to help the fight against Omicron and Covid. Hospitality for the Clachnacuddin game had been sold out. Ewan Neil and Shane Davies have had their loans extended to the end of the season.
December 26 After a pitch inspection at 4pm the game with Clachnacuddin was called off due to a frozen park. A disappointing end to 2021 and let’s hope for a good start to 2022 at Lossiemouth on Sunday January 3.
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