Burns Supper 2018

The Honest Men and Bonie Lasses Burns Supper will take place on Friday 2nd February 2018 in the Ally MacLeod Hospitality Suite.

Singing will be Tayler Logan which is a real coup as she reached the latter stages of televisions ‘The Voice’ earlier this year. Tayler is a graduate of The Royal Conservatoire and a really talented Burns speaker and we’re delighted she is also delivering the Reply on behalf of the Lasses.

Also a National Primary Schools Burns champion is Zoe Craig who is also performing on the evening. She is sensational!

The Immortal Memory will be given by Ian MacPherson MBE who is one of the finest Burns speakers in the country.

Comedian and acclaimed speaker Iain Gordon who performs throughout the UK will be doing Toast to the Lasses and to top it all off, seasoned Burns speaker and Ayr supporter Graham Hill will be the MC and reciting Tam O’Shanter.

Tickets are priced £35 and includes a fantastic 3 course meal and special gift for everyone attending. Tickets can be purchased in the club shop or by phone 01292 263435 ext 5.

Albion Rovers match preview

Match Preview
Ayr United vs. Albion Rovers
Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 2nd December 2017, Kick-off 3pm

On Saturday, we play the first of a League 1 double-header at Somerset Park with Albion Rovers the visitors. Rovers saw their fixture away to Stranraer fall victim to the weather last weekend, while the Honest Men needed a last minute Craig Moore winner at Alloa to clinch all three points – a six consecutive victory which ensured Ian McCall’s men retained their three point advantage at the top of the table.

 

Seventh placed Albion are without a win in their last five league games, including a 5-4 defeat at versus East Fife at New Bayview and 4-3 reverse at home to Forfar Athletic. Despite this recent slump and league position, Rovers have the second best away record in the division, picking up 13 points from 6 games on the road. Conversely they have lost six out of seven at Cliftonhill, their only home win coming against Raith Rovers at the end of September.

 

Brian Kerr’s men did get back to winning ways a fortnight ago, beating Lowland League side East Kilbride 4-3 in the Scottish Cup. Former United midfielder Alan Trouten scoring what proved to be the decisive goal, his eighteenth goal in just 19 matches.

 

Team News: Paddy Boyle, Robbie Crawford and Andy Geggan are out with injuries. Everyone else is available.

Ian says: “We have just had a very tough run of fixtures and taken maximum points so there is a different pressure tomorrow where we will be fully expected to win. We want to keep this run going and there is that winning mentality which was shown at the end of the game last week. Every game has different challenges and Albion Rovers have had a lot of wins away from home so we will need to be at our best if we want to take maximum points. We are really hoping for a similar atmosphere to the Stranraer and Raith games at Somerset, the better the atmosphere the more difficult it is for visiting teams.”

Head to head (League):

Ayr United wins – 43

Draws – 12

Albion Rovers wins – 27

 

Saturday will be the 50th meeting between the sides in Ayr. Albion Rovers were the first ever side to beat Ayr United at Somerset Park, back in October 1910 and also won on their last visit in April 2016 when former United defender Mick Dunlop netted the only goal.

 

Last Meeting: United travelled to Cliftonhill on the opening afternoon of the league campaign and returned to Ayrshire with a thumping 5-1 victory. Declan McDaid open the scoring in just the second minute and the Honest Men went into the break 3-0 up thanks to goals from Michael Moffat and Craig Moore. Moore completed his hat-trick in the second-half before a late Rovers consolation scored by Connor Shields.

 

On this day: in 2000, the Honest Men scored three goals away to Inverness Caledonian Thistle – but were on the wrong end of a 7-3 thumping.

 

Match Officials:

Referee – Craig Charleston

Assistant Referee 1 – Andrew McWilliam

Assistant Referee 2 – Mark McHendry

 

Admission:

Adults – £16
OAPs, students and 18-21 year olds – £10
Under 18s – £5

 

We look forward to welcoming all fans to Somerset Park.  Your support is vital.  However, we all need to be able to enjoy watching games in a safe and considerate environment.  We ask that you support the players and team without resorting to unacceptable behaviour that can lead to the Club and individuals facing charges.

Like all Scottish grounds, Ayr United have a searching policy as a condition of entry. 

Possessing or using any pyro device and anyone detected will be liable to prosecution and a lifetime ban from Somerset Park.

 

 Copies of our Unacceptable Conduct Policy can be found around the stadium, Match programme and on our website.  https://ayrunitedfc.co.uk/unacceptable-conduct-policy/

 

Thank you

Enjoy the game

Xmas shop opening hours

Christmas is fast approaching and we are currently receiving new stock every day to give our supporters as wide a choice as possible for the festive period. We have sold out of a number of ranges and sizes so if you see something you like and we don’t have it in stock then please ask as we are continually restocking.

Over the next week we are receiving a new order of leisurewear, socks, kids pyjamas and mugs so come in and see us or keep an eye on our website https://ayrunitedfc.co.uk/club-shop/

On Sunday 17th December we are open 12-4 for a Christmas Open Day and we will have players in the shop, mulled wine, shortbread and mince pies.

We are selling gift vouchers in the shop with £10 and £20 denominations. These are not available on the website however if you would like them you can pick them up in store or by phone on 01292 263435 ext 5.

Friday 1st December            – 1pm to 5pm

Saturday 2nd December     – 11am to 3pm then 4.45pm to 5.30pm

Sunday 3rd December        – Closed

Monday 4th December       – 1pm to 5pm

Tuesday 5th December       – 1pm to 5pm

Wednesday 6th December – 1pm to 5pm

Thursday 7th December      – 3pm to 8pm

Friday 8th December           – 1pm to 5pm

Saturday 9th December       – 11am to 3pm then 4.45pm to 5.30pm

Sunday 10th December        – Closed

Monday 11th December        – 1pm to 5pm

Tuesday 12th December       – 1pm to 5pm

Wednesday 13th December – 1pm to 5pm

Thursday 14th December     – 3pm to 8pm

Friday 15th December           – 1pm to 5pm

Saturday 16th December      – Closed

Sunday 17th December         – 12noon to 4pm (Xmas Open Day)

Monday 18th December       – 1pm to 5pm

Tuesday 19th December       – 1pm to 5pm

Wednesday 20th December – 1pm to 5pm

Thursday 21st December      – 3pm to 8pm

Friday 22nd December         – 10am to 5pm

Saturday 23rd December      – Closed

Christmas Eve                         – 12 noon to 3pm

Xmas Day & Boxing Day       – Closed

Wednesday 27th December  – 1pm to 5pm

Thursday 28th December     – 2pm to 5pm

Friday 29th December           – 1pm to 5pm

Saturday 30th December       – 11am to 3pm and short time after match

31st Dec & 1st, 2nd, 3rd Jan  – Closed

Thursday 4th January            – 2pm to 5pm

Friday 5th January                  – 1pm to 5pm

Saturday 6th January             – 11am to 3pm and short time after the match.

Shankland signs new deal

Lawrence Shankland today put pen to paper and signed a contract extension which keeps him at Somerset Park until the end of this season.

Manager Ian McCall said “Of course we are thrilled to get the deal done and ensure Lawrence will be part of the team for the rest of this season. There was a lot of interest in him and you would expect their to be after the way he has been performing however he has been really enjoying his football and you can see that in his performances. It has been really important for him to enjoy his football again and play regularly. He also has the competition of all 3 strikers scoring plenty of goals. Lawrence is showing he could play at a higher level and hopefully that could be with us.”

Lawrence has scored 12 goals in 11 games since joining the club.

Alloa match preview

Match Preview
Alloa Athletic vs. Ayr United
Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 25th November 2017, Kick-off 3pm

League 1’s two form sides go head-to-head on Saturday when Ayr United travel to the Indodrill Stadium to face Alloa Athletic. Ian McCall’s side are looking to extend their unbeaten run to 10 matches and continue a remarkable goalscoring record away from home; the Honest Men have netted 41 times in 11 games on the road this season, including six at Banks O’Dee in the Cup last Saturday.

 

Alloa defeated League 2 Stenhousemuir in the Scottish Cup last weekend, coming from behind to record a 2-1 victory at Ochilview where former United striker Craig Malcolm grabbed a brace to send the Wasps into the next round. That result was a fifth consecutive victory for Jim Goodwin’s men, who have wins over Albion Rovers, Airdrie, Queen’s Park and East Fife in recent weeks. Those four league wins, with just one goal conceded, see Alloa lie third in the league table, eight points behind United.

 

Team News: Paddy Boyle is out with the shoulder injury picked up last weekend and Jamie Adams won’t be risked on the surface.

Ian says: “It is a real shame for Paddy as he has been in excellent form so we will need to shuffle things around however we do have two or three boys that can play there. Alloa are in excellent form and have been on a great run so this will be an extremely tough game. We have played well on astroturf pitches this season and scored a lot of goals so we will be going there looking to continue the run we are on. The backing we got from the supporters last week was fantastic, especially after travelling all that way. Hopefully they do the same tomorrow!”

Head to head:

Ayr United wins – 57

Draws – 26

Alloa Athletic wins – 29

 

United are without a win in the last seven meetings between the sides. Our last win at Recreation Park came courtesy of a Willie Easton goal in January 2011.

 

Last Meeting: it was a six-goal thriller when the sides met earlier in the season at Somerset Park in September. Lawrence Shankland gave United the best possible start with a goal in the fourth minute but a Craig Reid own goal and Kevin Cawley header either side of half-time put Alloa in the lead. Jamie Adams levelled with 10 minutes to go before a hotly disputed Scott Taggart penalty restored the Wasp’s advantage. Shankland, however, scored again to make it 3-3 in the final minute.

 

United’s last match at the Indodrill Stadium was a chastening 4-0 Scottish Cup defeat in November 2014.

 

On this day: in 2010, the Honest Men defeated Stenhousemuir 2-0 at Somerset Park. A Ryan McCann goal on the stroke of half-time, and Danny McKay late in the game secured all three points for United.

 

Match Officials:

Referee – David Munro

Assistant Referee 1 – Stuart Hodge

Assistant Referee 2 – George Calder

 

Admission:

Adults – £16
Senior Citizen – £8
U16s – £4

We thank you for travelling to support the team.  Your support is vital.  However, we all need to be able to enjoy watching games in a safe and considerate environment. 

We ask that you support the players and team without resorting to unacceptable behaviour that can lead either Club or individuals facing charges.

All Scottish grounds have a searching policy as a condition of entry. 

Possessing or using any pyro device and anyone detected will be liable to prosecution and a lifetime ban from football stadiums.

 Copies of Ayr United’s Unacceptable Conduct Policy can be found on our website.  https://ayrunitedfc.co.uk/unacceptable-conduct-policy/

Thank you and enjoy the game.

Scottish Cup 4th Rd draw

Scottish Cup 4th round draw – Ayr United v Arbroath.

Tie will be played on Saturday, January 20th.

Pricing information will follow in due course.

Banks O’Dee 2 Ayr Utd 6

William Hill Scottish Cup

Banks O’ Dee 2 v 6 Ayr United

by AUmedia

Ayr United made the long trip to Aberdeen finally seeing off a stuffy Banks O’ Dee side with a brace of goals each from Shankland, Moore and McDaid in this William Hill Scottish Cup Third Round encounter.  On a less than perfect surface, in freezing conditions and up against a strong wind this potential banana skin was avoided with a thoroughly professional performance by the Honest Men.

With only 32 seconds on the clock, United took the lead.  Robbie Crawford powered through from his own half to 20 yards out where he played a one-two with Craig Moore (a delicious back-heeled nutmeg) before slipping the ball into the penalty area.  It looked a simple ball for the Dee defence to deal with, but somehow everything seemed to go wrong. Defender Alan White nervously tried to clear but hit the ball off his own wingback Neale Allan. Somehow the ball stuck between Allan’s feet and, with keeper Shearer unable to assist, United’s Lawrence Shankland stepped in and poked the ball into the net from a tight angle.

If United thought it was going to be easy, they were in for a shock.  Banks O’ Dee were awarded a penalty in 4 mins, when keeper Jordan Hart came off his line to try and reach a hanging cross but failed to make contact and ploughed through striker Jamie Watt before landing awkwardly. It took 4 minutes for the penalty to be taken as Hart received treatment to a facial injury sustained in the incident.

Watt then stepped up and slammed the ball into the net from the spot and bring the sides level.

Worse was to come for United on 25 minutes when Banks O’ Dee went ahead, again from the penalty spot, after Ross Docherty barged Michael Philipson.  Again, it was prolific goal scorer Watt who stepped up and drilled the ball home, low to Hart’s right, taking his season’s tally so far to 21 goals.

Banks O’ Dee returned to their game plan, defending in depth and numbers, attempting to stifle United’s attacking intentions.  The Honest Men showed skill, calmness and composure, working the ball around the pitch with some excellent interplay whilst probing the Banks O’ Dee defence.  Some hard challenges were going in and Paddy Boyle suffered a nasty one when he was barged in mid-air and landed heavily on his shoulder. On 36 mins Boyle was forced to come off and was replaced by Declan McDaid.

One minute later and Ayr were back on level terms.  Moore chased onto a high ball over the Dee defence and into the box where, under pressure from Liam McCall, he fired the ball along the 6-yard line to Shankland who tapped home.

As Ayr turned on the power, Banks O’ Dee struggled to cope with the tricky wing skills of Crawford and McDaid prompted by Docherty pulling the strings in midfield.

On 43 minutes Ayr claimed the lead they deserved. Shankland put pressure on defender White who could only tap the ball to McDaid on the right-hand side of the box.  McDaid controlled, shuffled onto his left foot, before smashing a drive high into the net.

Just on the stroke of half time Ayr finally put space between themselves and the stuffy Northern Super League team and what a peach it was. Crawford surged down the left and played the ball to Ferguson who neatly back healed the ball behind the defensive line where he found Crawford who had continued his run. The midfielder then cut in before finding McDaid who flicked the ball under control before rifling home from 8 yards.

It could have been more when, in the last of the half’s five additional minutes, Shankland hit the post with a fierce strike.

Ayr started the second half with the same intensity as they had finished the first and the skills gap between the two sides began to show in abundance.

On 52 minutes Geggan played a neat cutback to Shankland in the box but the striker’s drive went narrowly wide and settled in the side netting.

Whatever faint hope the Dee had of getting back into the game was finally crushed when Kane Winton was shown a second yellow for an elbow in the face of Ross Docherty.

Ayr piled on the misery for the Dee when in 63 mins they went 5-2 up. Andy Geggan played the ball in front of Moore who chased into the box before unleashing a thunderous drive into the roof of the net.

2 mins later and it was 6.  Keeper Shearer rushed out of his box in an attempt to beat Shankland to the ball, but his clearance was poor and only reached Moore who lifted the ball into the open net from 35 yards.

It was now a masterclass from Ayr, switching to 3 at the back and pushing forward in waves. Crawford, moving into the centre of midfield, looked exceptional probing the Dee defence with pinpoint passes and showing an elegant and skilful control that left opposition players trailing and bemused in his wake.

That Ayr didn’t score more is the only mystery, with a Rose header cleared off the line, a Crawford drive scraping over the bar, young substitute Luke McCowan dribbling across the edge of the box then seeing his shot going just over, Moore hitting the side netting, McDaid hitting the bar, and substitute McGuffie terrorising the Dee back line, and going close on two occasions.

A satisfying journey north for the Honest Men and they can look forward to League action next Saturday at Recreation Park, Alloa.

Banks 0’Dee

Shearer, Allan, White, McCall, Robertson, Hamilton, Henderson, Winton, Watt, Philipson, Hall Subs: Sahhalevtis (GK), Murray, Duguid, Macleod, Shrive, Taylor, Smith

 

Ayr United

Hart, Ferguson, Rose, Reid, Boyle, Geggan, Docherty, Crawford, Moffat, Shankland, Moore

Subs: Avci (GK), Forrest, McDaid, McGuffie, Faulds, Waite, McCowan

 

Referee: Craig Napier

Attendance: 469

Banks O’Dee match preview

Match Preview
Banks O’ Dee vs. Ayr United
William Hill Scottish Cup – 3rd Round
Saturday 18th November 2017. Kick-off 3pm

 

On Saturday, Ayr United make the  journey north to Spain Park, Aberdeen to face Junior side Banks O’ Dee in the third round of the Scottish Cup. It is something of a trip of the unknown for the Honest Men, who regardless will be buoyed by a dominant performance against League 1 challengers Raith Rovers on Tuesday night. A 3-0 win extended Ian McCall’s side’s advantage at the top of the table to three points and their unbeaten run to eight games.

Like United, Banks O’Dee are in red hot form and go into Saturday’s game on the back of a 10-0 win over North Superleague’s bottom side Banchory St. Ternan last weekend.

Team News: Chris Higgins and Brian Gilmour are both out with injuries. Jamie Adams won’t play due to the surface.

Ian says: “It is always good to have a break from the league and especially getting a draw in the cup that is something different for ourselves and our supporters. We take every cup seriously especially the Scottish Cup and there is no doubt we want to progress so we have prepared for this match the same way that we do for every other match. In absolutely no way will we be taking it lightly and that will be shown by our team selection. Games like this are never easy and they are in excellent form.”

Opponents: Banks O’Dee have won the Scottish Junior Football Association North Superleague in the previous two season and already look on course to win a third successive title, having won all nine league fixtures this season, scoring 36 goals and conceding just 5. Tommy Forbes & Sandy McNaughton’s side have a eight point advantage over nearest challengers Hermes plus a game in hand.

Striker Jamie Watt is the Dee’s dangerman. The 39-year old has 19 goals to his name this season in just 13 appearances, including five goals in the Scottish Cup.

Scottish Cup record: Ayr United have progressed past the third round of the Scottish Cup in seven of the last nine seasons. It is over 20 years since the Honest Men were knocked out the competition by a lower league club and the last non-league club to defeat Ayr in the Cup were Elgin City in 1967 – a season in which we won one league game all season and scored only 20 goals in 34 games.

The Honest Men have twice before faced Junior opponents in the Scottish Cup, requiring a replay to overcome East Region champs Lochee United in 2008 and defeating Aberdeen’s Sunnybank 5-0 in 2010.

Banks O’Dee are participating in Scottish Cup for the fourth time in their history. Wins over Linlithgow Rose (2-1), Huntly (4-0), and Selkirk (2-0) – all at home – has seen the Dee progress to the third round for the first time. Their only meeting against SPFL opposition in the competition was in 2009 when Montrose ran out 3-0 winners at Spain Park.

Match Officials:

Referee – Craig Napier

Assistant Referee 1 – Graeme Leslie

Assistant Referee 2 – David Watt

 

Admission:

Adult – £10

Concessions – £5

Club shop now Online

The Ayr United club shop is now online and available for orders. The site is working perfectly on laptops and desktop computers however on mobile devices, although all products are on there, it is not showing the product categories. This is being worked on currently and should be fixed within a few days.

We apologise for the length of time it has taken for us to have the online shop up and running however we had a long running problem with our payment provider who had to undertake a number of checks before giving us the go ahead to go live. We were advised it would be complete within two weeks however instead it took months.

We have a wide range of new products on the way including kids pyjamas, mugs, Xmas items, slippers, dressing gowns, Adidas trainingwear and lots more. All of these will be added to the website as soon as they arrive.

If you are looking for assistance or if there are any items you would like us to stock please contact us by email shop@ayrunitedfc.co.uk or by phone 01292 263435 ext5.

Every week the club shop will be open Monday 1-5, Thursday 3-8 and Friday 1-5. We will be opening extra days for Xmas and we will confirm this as soon as the decision has been made.

Project Brave statement

Progressive Ayr!

The Scottish FA yesterday announced the latest major developments in its Project Brave initiative, with confirmation of the club placings within the new academy structure. The Boards of Ayr United Football Academy and Ayr United Football Club are pleased to announce that the Academy teams will compete in the Progressive Section, which was designed to ensure that developing, ambitious academies could position themselves to progress to full Elite status.

AUFA is ideally placed to do so and, at latest, will make application for Elite status in June 2018, when the academies will be re assessed. We are already in discussion with the Scottish FA about this next move, as we have fulfilled 73 of the 75  Elite criteria against which we were assessed and although pleased to be an ambitious academy, we are disappointed that automatic entry to the Elite section was not granted.

What does this mean for our young players?

  • Our teams will compete against the other 7 Progressive teams, in the Scottish FA games programme, three times per season and against the Elite teams once per season, (see the team lists below). This will ensure that they face the same stiff opposition as they have done for the past few years.

ELITE: Aberdeen, Celtic, Hamilton, Heart of Midlothian, Hibernian, Kilmarnock, Motherwell, Rangers

PROGRESSIVE:  Ayr United, Dundee United, Forth Valley, Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Partick Thistle, Ross County*, St Mirren, St Johnstone

PERFORMANCE:  Dundee, Fife, Greenock Morton*, Queen’s Park

  • The standards around our Talented Young Footballers Programme are equal to those of the Elite teams. The Academy staff has been preparing for entry to the new stage of the Club Academy setup for the last year.
  • Ø Several key full time appointments have been made to the Coaching staff.
  • Ø A full time Head of Sports Science has been appointed
  • Ø A full time Head of Performance Analysis has been appointed
  • Ø A Head of the Professional Programme has been appointed, and
  • Ø Standards have generally been raised all round.
  • The newly appointed personnel will of course remain in place, and standards will be enhanced in preparation for the next application. In short, we are not content to remain in the Progressive section. Elite status was, and remains, our goal and while we seek this goal our young players will be offered the same high level standards as their counterparts in the Elite section.
  • This will undoubtedly improve the players’ chances of progressing to first team football and achieving international status. Full time training has been introduced, leading to contracts being put in place for Academy players, positioning them to compete at first team level. Already this season, 8 Academy graduates have made appearances in the first team, with 5 of these, David Waite, Luke McCowan, Leon Murphy, Stuart Faulds and James Hilton making debuts, with Kieran Balfour excelling in the 20’s team and patiently awaiting his turn.

Finn Ecrepont has represented Scotland at 16’s level and there are others in the younger age groups waiting for their chance to show their talents on the higher stages.

Head of Academy, Davie White summarised by saying:

“This is another important step on the Academy’s pathway to the top. We have been steadily improving standards since the Academy was formed and this is not the end of that pathway, merely a slight pause before we move on to Elite status. Our staff and volunteers are all aware of our ambitions and I am proud of their commitment and the way that they have applied themselves to providing the environment which our young players experience.

I look to coaches, players, parents and staff to support our objective to remain competitive, maintain high standards and show constant enthusiasm within the Progressive section. We aim to demonstrate to the Scottish FA on and off the pitch that we are ready for the Elite step up when the opportunity arrives!”