Report: Arbroath Vics pick up first clean sheet of the season

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Arbroath Vics were back at home on Saturday when they entertained Lochee Harp in a North Division fixture.

Arran Lyall, 15, took over in goal from the suspended Jack Whitton, while Sam Clark switched to centre-half replacing Kevin Durno, who had been released.

Co-manager Mark Fotheringham was drafted into midfield, while there were also starting places for Jonathon Bastow and Garry Warren.

The first half chance fell Vics’ way in the ninth minute when they broke downfield from a Harp corner with Ryan Lewis and Warren carrying the ball forward, but the move eventually came to nothing when Warren ran the ball over the by-line before he could get in a cross.

Three minutes later, a good move down the right involving Bastow, Lewis and Josh Chalmers stretched the Harp defence before the Vics full-back swung a dangerous cross into the box, but Frankie Mullen did well to head over his own bar for a corner before Garry Warren could get on the end of it.

Play was decidedly scrappy with neither team creating much in the way of chances until the 20th minute when Sam Clark missed a Derryn Kesson through ball, allowing Jordan Colquhoun to break forward, but Lyall stood up to push his shot behind for a corner.

Vics were awarded a free-kick 25 yards from goal when Garry Warren was pulled back, but Scott Donald’s shot was easily held by goalkeeper Peter Garty.

Despite that, there was little of note to excite anyone with only a Garry Warren shot, which Peter Garty had little difficulty gathering at his near post, just before the interval, worthy of a mention.

The second half was even scrappier than the first and it was the 70th minute before any real chance was created when Kesson played Sam McDonald in, but Sam Clark came across to halt his progress with a fine sliding tackle on the edge of the box.

Five minutes later, Gordon Ramsay got on the end of a Ryan McKillen corner kick and directed a header just over the bar.

At the other end, Fotheringham turned a Scott Donald cross back into the path of Rikki Gillespie, but in keeping with what had gone before, his shot failed to trouble the keeper as it went wide of the target.

Harp almost made the breakthrough a minute later when Sam McDonald headed on a Peter Garty clearance, allowing Colquhoun to get down the right and whip a dangerous cross into the box, which picked out Frankie Mullen, but Kyle Findlater made an important block on the six-yard line to keep out his shot.

Sam McDonald then got his head to a Gordon Ramsay free-kick, but his backward header dropped well wide of the target.

Vics had a late chance to seal the three points in stoppage time when Rikki Gillespie sent Marc Walker through on goal, but he scuffed his shot and Peter Garty had little difficulty in gathering it.

In a poor match, a goalless draw looked on the cards from early on, with neither side able to create many real clear cut openings.

On a positive note, Vics will have been glad to get another point on the board and in the process keep a clean sheet for the first time this season.

Vics travel to Perth this Saturday to meet Kinnoull.