Ayr United vs. Greenock Morton
Saturday 28th January 2017 – Kick-off 5.15pm
On Saturday, we welcome Greenock Morton and the BBC Alba cameras to Somerset Park as our Championship season resumes. United required 210 minutes and a penalty shoot-out to overcome Queen’s Park and Ian McCall’s side will now turn their attention to picking up a much needed three points.
Morton continued their good run of form when they saw off Falkirk in the Scottish Cup at Cappielow last weekend. The win extended their unbeaten run at home to 17 games, a record stretching back to March 2016. Ton have been less prolific away from home, however, and have won just two of nine league games on the road this season,
Team News: Everyone is fit and available.
Ian McCall says: “It just shows you how bizarre football can be, earlier in the season Morton came here, we won 2-1 and the Morton fans were shouting for the manager to go. A few months later and Morton are one of the form teams in Scotland and Jim Duffy would get my vote for manager of the year. We have already played them twice, 2-1 both times and at Cappielow we were unlucky to come away with a narrow defeat. After a tough 120 minutes at Hampden we may look to freshen up the team a wee bit as there are several boys desperate to get in that starting 11 which is a good position to be in. With the reduced entry I really hope the fans turn up and get right behind us from the first minute as they can be a massive help to us in what will be a really difficult game.”
The Opponents: Jim Duffy has added striker Lawrence Shankland to his squad in the January transfer window but lost defender Gavin Gunning, who has signed for Grimsby Town.
Ayr United wins – 60
Draws – 31
Morton wins – 48
The Greenock side’s last win at Somerset Park was in November 2011 when David O’Brien netted the only goal in the first half. There have been two home wins and two draws since.
Last meeting: Both fixtures this season between the sides have ended 2-1 to the home side. In September, Paul Cairney and Alan Forrest scored in front of the Somerset Road End before Mark Russell was sent off. A late Ross Forbes goal proved to be just a consolation.
At the end of October at Cappielow, a late Gary Oliver goal won it for Morton; Thomas O’Ware had equalised after Kevin Nisbet had put the Honest Men ahead.
On this day: in 1923, Ayr defeated Rangers 2-0 in the Scottish Cup at Somerset Park with goals from Murdoch McKenzie and John McLean.
Referee – Don Robertson
Assistant Referee 1 – Brian Templeton
Assistant Referee 2 – Garry Farmer
Fourth Official – Steven Kirkland
£5 for everyone!