Peterhead match preview

Match Preview
Ayr United vs. Peterhead
Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 6th February 2016

On Saturday, second face third in League 1 when on form Peterhead make the long journey south to Somerset Park. United’s advantage over the Blue Toon has been cut to just one point in recent weeks, albeit the Honest Men have two games in hand.

Somerset Park has been inactive for over a month and Ayr’s last home match was a 2-1 win over Brechin City on Boxing Day. Two weeks ago, Ian McCall’s men recorded a fine 3-1 victory away to Albion Rovers but were unable to capitalise on Dunfermline’s Friday night loss at home to Airdrie when high winds saw last weekend’s fixture against Stenhousemuir postponed.

Peterhead are on an 11 game unbeaten run the league, last tasting defeat away to Stenhousemuir at the end of October. After drawing with Dunfermline a fortnight ago, the Blue Toon hammered Albion Rovers at home last weekend, winning 5-1.

Jim McInally’s side have scored 21 goals in their last six games and nine in their last two games on the road. Only Rangers and Celtic have more league goals that Peterhead this season. The Blue Toon face the Ibrox side in the final of the Petrofact Challenge Cup in April.

Team News: Paddy Boyle and Ross Docherty are unavailable due to injury. Everyone else is fit and included in the squad.

Ian says:”Despite a bad start to the season we all knew Peterhead would be there or thereabouts eventually and that’s exactly whats happened. They have a lot of quality and one of the 3 best strikers in the league. Peterhead wont just be thinking about a play off slot they will be thinking about the title so we know how big a game this is and how tough it will be however like I always say we are at Somerset Park so we will be going all out for the 3 points.”

Head-to-Head:
Ayr United wins – 8
Draws – 9
Peterhead wins – 13

In 13 league matches between the sides at Somerset Park, Ayr have recorded just one victory against Peterhead – a 2-0 win in October 2008 in which Ryan Stevenson and Alex Williams scored.

Last Meeting: The Blue Toon were 3-0 victors the week before Christmas in blusterly conditions at Balmoor, with all three goals coming after the 60 minute mark. Earlier in the season, a late Jamie Redman goal cancelled out captain Nicky Devlin’s 55th minute header at Somerset Park.

On this day: in 2002, United won through to their only ever national cup final with a 1-0 win after extra-time against Hibernian at Hampden Park. Eddie Annand netted from the penalty spot after John Robertson’s lung busting run ending in him being fouled in the box.

Match Officials:
Referee – Alan Muir
Assistant Referee 1 – Michael Banks
Assistant Referee 2 – Thomas Clark

Admission:
Adults – £15
OAP’s/Under 16’s and students – £8
Parent & Child Gate – £18

Peterhead season-ticket holders can gain entry for £13 on production of their 2015/16 season-ticket.