Away league match played on 16 February 2019.
Kicked off at 2:00 PM

It was great to get a game on a Saturday as it had been a few weeks since Ashfield had played and the game did not come any bigger than a trip to Millburn Park to take on Vale of Leven, who were now sitting in the Promotion spot after a period of positive sustained results. The `field knew what they had to do today in order to claw themselves back into the promotion race and that was really a victory and as they set about their task against determined opponents in their away strip of all red. The opening exchanges were fast and furious and Ashfield had a couple of players playing out of positions due to injuries and young Lee Cochrane moved from his Midfield berth to support Graeme Heaton up front and it was those who linked up well in the 7th minute when Graeme Hearton almost connected to a Lee Cochrane cross. Shortly after and Mark McManus found some space in the box at an acute angle and his volley narrowly missed the far post. Vale of Leven stepped up the pace shortly after and a lovely move saw McGeachy played through and after rounding Farquhar his net bound effort was cleared on the line by Alex Amos. Five minutes later and it was Ashfield``s turn to have a one on one when Giblin played through Cochrane and as the Keeper advanced his shot was blocked by the home keeper however on the 26th Minute, Sheilds in the Vale goal had no chance with an Ashfield effort. Michael Giblin, returning after long term injury, gathered the ball 25 yards out and took a step before drilling a shot into the top corner of the net to put the `field ahead. Vale of Leven 0 Ashfield 1. It was a tremendous strike from the Ashfield Midfielder and officially opened his goalscoring account for the season. The home side became rattled after this and were guilty of a couple of strong challenges in which Referee Peacock brandished his yellow card. The home side were determined to try and get on level terms before the interval however Cammy Farquhar in the Ashfield goal was commanding in the air and chances were at a premium for the home side. Ashfield had a chance on the 40th minute when a glancing header went by the far post from a free kick however were quite happy to see half time and regroup for the 2nd. ? HT:- VALE OF LEVEN 0 ASHFIELD 1 ? The Half time resfreshments were welcome on this damp day and the crowd of circa 100 were all set for another absorbing 45 minutes. No changes to either line up as the game started and for a period of time the game became embroiled in midfield and a bit stop-start due to injuries. The home side were struggling to get any sort of sustained pressure on Ashfield as the back four were extremely well marshalled and were beginning to break with pace. Mark McManus and Michael Giblin were getting joy down the flanks and Billy Stevenson who replaced Graeme Hearton in the first half was making his presence known to the Vale defence. Just after the hour mark and Ashfield`s afternoon just got better. Again it was good defensive work from Ashfield which allowed the ball to be played through the middle to Michael Giblin who then laid off a superb pass to Mark McManus on the edge of the box. The Ashfield Midfielder had time to look up and float a lovely ball to the far post where Michael Giblin came running in and bulleted a header into the roof of the net to the delight of the travelling support. A really well worked goal from Ashfield and the reaction from the players was there to see. Vale of Leven 0 Ashfield 2. The home side made a couple of changes after this however it was Goalkeeper Sheilds that kept the score down after a magnificent block from a left foot volley from Paul McQuilken, The Ex-Pollok stalwart thought that he had opened his account for the `field. Next up Cammy Farquhar had to deal with a shot from the right in which he just managed to keep the ball out before another Ashfield attack saw the ball break nicely to Mark McManus in the box however his left foot volley crashed off the post and was cleared to safety. As the game entered the last 5 minuted another clearance found Gavin Goodall on the left and as he charged in on goal floated the ball to Mark McManus and after an initial effort being blocked was brought down as gathered the loose ball and Referee Peacock had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Ashfield Captain Ciaran Friel stepped up and despite a valliant effort from the Vale Keeper, Ashfield were 3-0 up. Vale of Leven 0 Ashfield 3. Referee had still some work to do before bringing the game to a close and Lee McGeachy was shown a 2nd yellow card for an infringement. This result brings the `field back into the `mix for the Promotion place alongside Vale of Leven and Carluke. Vale of Clyde were also on the fringes however lost at home to Annbank Utd which shows how tough this League is. The `field welcome Muirkirk to the Peugeot Ashfield Stadium next Saturday and Vale of Leven are away to Thorniewood

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