Concern for Welfare in bizarre encounter

The outcome of the game wasn't quite so happy for Gala Fairydean Rovers manager Steven Noble, left and Sean Paliczka (picture by Stuart Cobley)
The outcome of the game wasn't quite so happy for Gala Fairydean Rovers manager Steven Noble, left and Sean Paliczka (picture by Stuart Cobley)

Whitehill Welfare..........5

Gala Fairydean Rovers...3

It’s perhaps a good thing that Gala Fairydean Rovers do not play again till Hogmanay, as their squad may need all that time to work out how they lost this game, writes Kenny Paterson.

A match which started off in ridiculous fashion, as Whitehill Welfare were forced to change their strips because of a colour clash, ended with Scott Gormley rolling the ball into the net for the homesters’ fourth goal in a crazy final eight minutes to reverse a 3-1 Gala lead.

Gala FR boss Stevie Noble was left ruing some suicidal defending in the closing stages at Ferguson Park, which denied his team what would have been an outstanding win.

After the comical start to the game, as Welfare’s maroon shirts were changed to blue and white five minutes into the game, to avoid an obvious colour conflict, both teams got into their stride.

After Kieran Wright made two excellent stops, Gala took the lead with Des Sutherland’s inswinging corner headed in from a couple of yards by George Windram on 37 minutes.

But Windram played his part in the Welfare equaliser just three minutes after half-time as Osborne’s shot hit his arm, with referee Craig Ferguson awarding the spot kick which Dale O’Hara converted.

Further goals seemed certain as both sides threw players forward.

Bryan Young made a great save from hugely impressive Hibs loanee Adam Watson, but the Whitehill stopper was at fault as Gala took the lead 10 minutes from time, as Sean Paliczka’s 40-yard free kick flew into the top corner.

And, two minutes later, the points looked to be sealed as Stuart Noble produced a thumping finish to make it 3-1.

But the madness was just beginning.

Scott Gormley headed in a free kick to make it 3-2 within a minute and then Chalmers made it 3-3 with four minutes left.

New signing Connor Brydon put Whitehill ahead as he waltzed through Gala’s defence in the 89th minute, before Gormley got his second in the 92nd minute.

Noble said: “We were brilliant for 80 minutes but fell apart at the end. But we will bounce back.”

Gala Fairydean Rovers: K. Wright, L. Stephen, B. Miller, G. Windram, K. Waugh, D. Bonnar, R. Aitchison, A. Watson, S. Noble, S. Paliczka, D. Sutherland (L. White 73).