Honours even for Red Star in Argyll derby

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The Ropework played host to this keenly contested local derby which was watched by a healthy crowd on Saturday February 16.

And for the second time this season, Red Star and Campbeltown Pupils shared the points in a match both sides will feel they could have won.

Both sides were struggling for fluency in the opening stages but Red Star settled first and grabbed the opening goal after 17 minutes. A long ball to the right hand side was met by Ryan Caskie who cut the ball back to Stuart McLean. The youngster took a touch before slotting past the Pupils’ goalkeeper to give Star a 1-0 lead.

Star continued to press and doubled their lead when Coll McCallum robbed the Pupils’ defender on the edge of the box before cutting the ball across goal. The unfortunate Pupils’ defender could only divert the ball into the empty net, with McLean waiting on a tap in. The game continued at a frantic pace, however, there was no further scoring in the first half and Star went in with a 2-0 advantage.

Pupils came out with purpose in the second half as they looked to force themselves back into the game, however, it was a howler from Red Star which allowed them back into the match.

A square ball across the back resulted in a mix-up between Star keeper Luke Kalache and defender Ben Forbes which allowed Donald McCallum to prod the ball home from just inside the box and Pupils were back in the game at 2-1 with eight second half minutes gone.

The home side didn’t recover from this and you could sense a nervousness that gave the visitors plenty encouragement. The equaliser arrived with 20 minutes remaining when good play from Pupils down the right by Soudan saw him get a low cross in which was met by the on-rushing run of Ryan Deans and he finished well to level the score at 2-2.

This set up a frantic finish and both sides could have nicked it towards the end. Pupils went close with a headed effort which was clawed to safety while at the other end there was a goalmouth scramble which Star couldn’t convert and both sides had to settle for a draw in the end as referee Jimmy Litster blew for full time.

Red Star were dealt a blow as it emerged that captain Aaron Moore suffered a dislocated shoulder. Hopefully this will not keep him out for too long.

On Saturday February 23, Star have another important home game as they look to move off the bottom of the table when they take on Claremont AFC. The game will be played at the Ropework or Joint Campus 3G – weather permitting – with a 2pm kick off.