Muirhead signs 18 month deal

United sign Muirhead

Ayr United are delighted to announce the signing of defender Aaron Muirhead on a deal until the end of next season. Manager Ian McCall has moved to strengthen his defensive options after Falkirk made their club captain available.    


The 28 year-old from Dumfries was briefly part of the Ayr United Football Academy U19s as a youngster before joining Annan Athletic, where he made his senior debut in 2009. After three seasons and 100 appearances for the Galabankies in the Third Division, Partick Thistle handed Muirhead the opportunity of full-time football, a chance he grabbed with both hands, making 29 league appearances in the Firhill club’s First Division title winning season, 2012/13. 

After a further 18 months playing in the SPL with Thistle, Muirhead moved to join Falkirk in January 2015, at the same time as Mark Kerr. The pair were part of the Bairns side that recorded back-to-back second place finishes in the Championship. 

As well as being a uncompromising defender, Muirhead is a deadly penalty taker and has an unenviable record from the spot.

McCall said: “With Michael leaving at the end of the season we had to ensure we added someone in that area and Aaron can play centre back and cover at right back or in the centre of midfield. He was an ever present in the Thistle team that won the league and when Falkirk were challenging at the top for several seasons. Falkirk have had a tough 18 months and he just needs a fresh start. Again he is exactly the type of boy I want in our squad and he will be a real asset.”

Aaron goes straight into the squad for Friday night’s fixture at home to Dundee United.

Guff and Fergie go out on loan.

Craig McGuffie and David Ferguson have today completed loan moves to League 1 clubs for the rest of the season.

Midfielder McGuffie has joined Raith Rovers and will look to help the Kirkcaldy club clinch promotion to the Championship, twelve months on after narrowly being edged out by the Honest Men on the final day of last season. 

Ferguson, who recently signed a new 18 month deal at Somerset Park, meanwhile joins Jim Duffy’s Dumbarton. The Sons sit just three points off the foot of the League 1 table.

Ian McCall said: “The next part of the season is absolutely crucial for us but as a manager you can’t take your eye off trying to evolve the club. David and Craig need game time in pressurised situations. They are still both very young but both have serious attributes to succeed. They are both going to two managers that I know well and that will help them. The key is to have them back at the end of the season fighting to get in our first team next season.”

Best of luck to both players.

5 star lottery winners wk 29

FIVE STAR WEEKLY WINNERS

WEEK NUMBER  29        21/01/19

£1000 I1321 Gerry Moore Dunure
       
MONDAY    
£50 I3231 J Campbell Ochiltree
£10 D3843 B Morrison Martha Dickies, Ayr
£10 R2213 A Buchanan Ayr
£10 D4713 M Close Sanquhar
       
TUESDAY    
£50 H2144 T Smith Dundonald
£10 D4311 W Crawford St Cuthbert GC, Prestwick
£10 A0133 H McArtney Dailly
£10 A1714 A Henderson Prestwick
`      
WEDNESDAY    
£50 G4342 M Brown Crosshill
£10 A0341 J Walker Drongan
£10 T0212 D McCafferty Ayr
£10 B4022 K Maclachlan Rankinston
       
THURSDAY    
£50 D3042 Mrs Bye Girvan
£10 C0545 C Burnside Coylton
£10 C2532 J Walker Ochiltree
£10 C2243 K Barr Ayr
       
FRIDAY    
£10 B1231 M McKnight Girvan
£10 C5021 N Brown Dalrymple
£10 D3845 J Munro Matha Dickies, Ayr
       

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Smoke Device

Once again the vast majority of Ayr United supporters have been let down by a minority after a smoke device was thrown onto the pitch on Saturday.

These actions will place the club under investigation, as also happened after the Beith game.

As a result we are working with Police Scotland and East Ayrshire council CCTV to try and identify the person concerned.

If you have any information please contact Roy Provan, safety and stadium manager, royprovan@yahoo.co.uk

Auchinleck match preview

Match Preview

Auchinleck Talbot vs. Ayr United

William Hill Scottish Cup Fourth Round

Saturday 19th January 2019. Kick-off 12.15pm

On Saturday, Ayr United make the short journey east to face Junior behemoths Auchinleck Talbot for a much anticipated Ayrshire derby in the fourth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup.  

The Honest Men go into the televised tie on the back of two defeats and five games without a win, in stark contrast to Talbot who have won their last eight games and are undefeated in 13, stretching back to the start of October.

The Opposition: Twelve-times winners of the Scottish Junior Cup, including last year, Auchinleck are competing in the senior Scottish Cup for the seventh time this season. They have fared well against SPFL clubs on the four previous occasions they have come up against league opposition, including a controversial narrow defeat to Hearts at Tynecastle in January 2012 where a last-minute goal by Gordon Pope was incorrectly ruled out for offside, denying Talbot a replay.

Pope is one of six former Ayr United players currently in Beechwood Park side’s squad, with Willie Lyle, Craig McCracken, David Waite, Gareth Armstrong and Mark Shankland also amongst Tommy Sloan’s ranks. Striker Graham Wilson is Talbot’s top goalscorer this season with 22 goals in 25 appearances in all competitions. 

Road to Round Four: Auchinleck Talbot have already played six matches in the William Hill Scottish Cup this season, including away trips to Wick, Cove Rangers and Fraserburgh. Their first match in the competition was a 3-1 win over Banks O’Dee at Beechwood Park, which they followed up with a 10-0 win over Wigton & Bladnoch before narrowly overcoming the three Highland League teams, requiring a replay to defeat Cove.

The Honest Men have already face opposition from the Ayrshire Juniors this season, eventually defeating West Super League champions Beith Juniors in the previous round.

Team News:  Alan Forrest, Jamie Adams and Mark Kerr are out with injuries. Everyone else is fit and available.

Ian says: “It will be a great occasion, Talbot have a great history and with the capacity crowd and live TV cameras there it will be electric. We were in Auchinleck last night and you can tell the anticipation levels are huge. It is a huge game for us as well though and we absolutely want to make sure we are in that draw for the last 16.”

Match Officials:

Referee – Euan Anderson

Assistant Referee 1 – Frank Connor

Assistant Referee 2 – Craig Ferguson

Fourth Official – Lloyd Wilson

Admission:

Ayr United fans are asked enter and exit from the Main Street Gates 6 & 7 and will occupy the north end of the Main Street Terracing from the segregation point, the Bank End and the East Terracing up to the stand. Stand ticket holders will be seated in the north side of the stand.

Disabled access will be available at the social club gates.

Buses can drop off in Main Street, and leave the town if they wish, as long as they are back for pick up in the Main Street in good time for the game finishing. If they staying in Auchinleck, they should park at High house industrial estate on Barony Road.Entry to the ground for Ayr support is via gates 6 and 7 which are accessed from Main Street.

Searching is a condition of entry, aimed mainly at pyrotechnics and alcohol.

It is strongly advised that fans arrive in plenty time, as queues will build at the two turnstiles. The game is strictly ticket only, no person will be admitted without one. the kick off time is 12.15pm and turnstiles will open at 11am.

CODE OF CONDUCT

ALL PERSONS ENTERING THE GROUND ARE ADMITTED SUBJECT TO THE CONDITION THAT THEY MAY BE RQUIRED TO SUBMIT TO A SEARCH TO PREVENT DANGEROUS ARTICLES BEING BROUGHT INTO THE GROUND WHICH MAY BE USED TO CAUSE INJURY OR DAMAGE TO PERSONS OR PROPERTY

NO PYROTECHNICS PERMITTED.

  • STRICTLY NO ALCOHOL WILL BE ALLOWED INSIDE THE GROUND, ALSO PERSONS WHO ARE INTOXICATED BY ANY MEANS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED ADMISSION TO THE MATCH.
  • SUPPORTERS ARE NOT PERMITTED TO ENTER THE FIELD OF PLAY AT ANY TIME, ANYONE FOUND TO BE DOING SO WILL BE BANNED FROM FUTURE MATCHES
  • THREATENING BEHAVIOUR, RACIST, SECTARIAN OR DISCRIMINATORY ABUSE IS NOT ACCEPTABLE AND WILL NOT BE TOLLERATED BY THE CLUB

Fergie & Doc sign new deals

Club captain Ross Docherty and David Ferguson have both signed new 18 month deals keeping them at the club to the end of the 2019/20 season.

Manager Ian McCall said “Doc has been very unfortunate with injuries and has had to work very hard to get himself back fit. He is an important player for us and we are delighted to see him back out there. He will be also be very important for us moving forward.

David has impressed us all in training and we think he has a real future. Everyone needs to remember how young he still is. He hasn’t had the game time he would like but he is always ready to step in and never lets us down.”

Inverness 1 Ayr Utd 0

Inverness Caledonian Thistle 1 v 0 Ayr United

by AUmedia

An injury depleted Ayr United squad took the long road north to Inverness, hoping to get their first win in 5 games, but lost out to a 64 min goal by the hosts. However, with other results in the league helping them, they remain second in the league just three points behind leaders Ross County with a game in hand.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle were first out of the traps, with a Liam Polworth shot supplied by Jordan White whistling past the left-hand post of the Ayr United goal within 40 seconds of the kick-off. An early warning from the hosts that they were determined to get only their second home win of the season that Ayr would do well to heed. With a further two minutes on the clock, Ayr attempted their first attack of the game.  Michael Rose intercepted a pass from the attacking Inverness and headed the ball to Moffat, who passed it through to Moore, who in turn passed it on to the advancing Geggan. Sliding the ball neatly past two Inverness defenders and into the path of the Moffat, the Ayr striker headed goalwards, but his shot was weak and was easily stopped by Ridgers.

On the 11th minute, Moffat was the supplier this time, sending a long cross-field pass from left to right which was collected by Moore, who sent the ball scudding in to the area where Moffat was by now waiting for the delivery, but the striker was unable to control the ball and it trundled out harmlessly for a goal kick. It was Inverness that came closest to opening the scoring though on 16 minutes. A cross from the right-hand side by Jamie Doran was blocked by Daniel Harvie, and it was Aaron Doran who was first to the loose ball, his driven shot rebounding off the post, with Ross Doohan stranded and unable to reach it. Inverness continued to press hard, with a low shot by Joe Chalmers from just outside the box also coming close, although Doohan appeared to have the shot covered as it slid past his left-hand post.

Play by now was fast and frenetic, but both teams struggled to retain possession of the ball, seemingly intent on passing to their opponents rather than team members and neither side possessing the clinical touch in front of goal to obtain the opening score. But both sides were to have one more attempt each before the first half ended. The first of these fell to Inverness on the 38th minute. The Ayr defenders failed to clear the ball from their box and despite the attentions of Declan McDaid, Jordan White managed to get a shot off that just slipped past the post. Turning from defence to attacker, McDaid then made a run down the left-hand side, having received the ball from Rose in the centre circle. His shot from just outside the box connected with the foot of Carl Tremarco to sail harmlessly over the bar for a corner kick.  At half time with neither side having found a breakthrough.

From the start of the second half, ICT began to impose themselves more on the game, retaining possession better and making multiple attempts on the United goal. Although Ayr did have their chances with shots coming in from McDaid and Moore, the ball stayed resolutely outside the goal.  A poor pass from Moffat on 51 minutes saw ICT break forward, eventually finding Jordan White free in space with only Michael Rose to beat. Roses’ sliding tackle was enough to put the ICT striker off though and the ball was collected by Doohan to snub out another attempt to open the scoring.

The deadlock was broken on the 64th minute and it was ICT who would be celebrating. A misplaced pass by Declan McDaid saw ICT get the ball in the centre circle. Aaron Doran took the ball out to the left and evading the attention of David Ferguson crossed the ball into the box from the goal line. Missing everyone though, the ball seemed destined to go out for a throw-in, but Sean Welsh was determined to keep the ball in play. He managed to get to the ball and whipped a cross in from the right-hand side and it was met full on the head by Jordan White to send it into the back of the Ayr United net. 1-0 Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

With only the three outfield substitutes on the bench, options were limited for McCall in ringing the changes. Craig McGuffie came on in the 67th minute to replace Geggan, Higgins took the place of McDaid on 73 minutes and the final change saw McCowan come on for Moore 6 minutes later. Steven Bell pushed up into a more attacking role for the remainder of the game. But ICT were now determined to retain their lead and made it difficult for Ayr to break through their defence, falling back in numbers whenever Ayr pushed forward. In truth, ICT never really looked like they were going to concede a goal against an off-form Ayr United, and so it was as the game ended with a home win for Inverness and second 1-0 defeat on the bounce for Ayr United. However, results elsewhere, especially a 4-0 win for Queen of the South over Ross County, saw Ayr stay second in the table, with Dundee United third on goal difference. Ayr United do have a game in hand against both of their title rivals.

Speaking after the game, Ayr United manager Ian McCall conceded that the team had not performed as well as hoped, regardless of the number of injuries they were currently working with. Thoughts now turn to next weekend and the William Hill Cup game against Auchinleck Talbot.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle: Ridgers, Tremarco, Chalmers, Donaldson, McCart, Polworth, Doran, Walsh, Welsh, White, McHattie Subs: C Mackay, D Mackay, Trafford, McGregor, Nicolson, Brown, Harper

Ayr United: Doohan, Harvie, Rose, Geggan, Moffat, Crawford, Moore, McDaid, Ferguson, Bell, Docherty Subs: Hare-Reid, Higgins, McGuffie, McCowan.

Referee: William Collum

Attendance: 2283

Somerset Sleepout

We have teamed up with the charity SeAscape to offer everyone a unique chance to spend a night at Somerset Park.

SeAscape focus on helping people in housing need. Those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

On Saturday, April 6, we are hosting a fundraiser to highlight problems encountered by rough sleepers.

Commercial manager Graeme Miller said “We had a meeting with SeAscape and it was eye opening to say the least hearing about the extent of homelessness we have here locally. As soon as the idea was spoken about I knew that our fans would absolutely jump at the idea of sleeping on our hallowed turf, and at the same time raising money for a great cause.

In fact I actually think it is something that will appeal to a lot more than just our supporters. It will be a great night and atmosphere with everyone there for the one cause.”

SeAscape assistant CEO, Kelsey Kane, said “We’re hugely excited about this as we think it’s a first for Ayrshire. Sleepouts are growing in popularity, but they tend to be big city events.

As an Ayr fan myself I was keen to approach the club with the idea and they were more than keen to come on board.

For fans of the club, sleeping under the stars at their stadium should be a real thrill however it is not just restricted to Ayr fans. We’d love to see as many people as possible attend and make a night of it.”

Participants will be asked to pay a £5 registration fee before fundraising and for more information and a welcome pack text SLEEP to 07418 314 300.

Inverness match preview

Match Preview

Inverness Caledonian Thistle vs. Ayr United

Ladbrokes Championship

Saturday 12th January 2019. Kick-off 3pm

On Saturday, Ayr United travel north to Inverness looking to get back to winning ways after falling to their first league defeat since October last weekend. Since thrashing Dundee United 5-0 at the end of November, the Honest Men have drawn three and lost one but remain in touch with top-of-the-table Ross County, sitting just three points behind with a game in hand.

The Opposition: A poor run of form has seen Inverness slide down in the league table in recent weeks. Back-to-back 2-1 defeats at the hands of Ross County and at home to Queen of the South leaves Caley in sixth position, albeit only two points off Greenock Morton in the final promotion play-off spot.

Remarkably, Inverness have just one home win in the Championship this season, coming against Partick Thistle in mid-September. Seven of their 10 league matches at the Caledonian Stadium have ended in a draw.


John Robertson has added former Hearts, Kilmarnock and Raith Rovers defender Kevin McHattie to his squad during the January transfer window, following a spell with Derry City.

Form Guide (League):

Ayr United – WDDDL

Inverness – LDWLL

Team News:  Lawrence Shankland, Jamie Adams, Mark Kerr, Liam Smith and Alan Forrest are out with injuries. Andy Murdoch is suspended.

Ian says: “Last week was very frustrating. We didn’t play well but it was a game we definetly should not have lost. Falkirk didn’t really create anything of note and we had a lot of the ball. We can’t allow ourselves to get into a habit of not taking chances so of course that is something we have been working on. Inverness are a very difficult team to beat and it will be an extremely difficult game but after a loss we can’t wait to get back out there.”

Head to Head:

Ayr United wins – 7
Draws – 11

Inverness wins – 12

United have only ever won once at the Caledonian Stadium in 15 matches, that victory coming in Division One in January 2003. Stewart Kean scored in the third minute and the Honest Men held on despite Paul Lovering’s late red card.

Last Match: Ayr United left the Highland capital in August frustrated not to take all three points despite having full back Daniel Harvie sent-off for two bookable offences and playing for over an hour with 10 men. The game ended goalless.

The first scheduled fixture between the sides at Somerset Park this season was postponed last month due to high winds.

On this day: in 1957, United defeated Rangers 1-0 at Somerset Park.  

Match Officials:

Referee – Willie Collum

Assistant Referee 1 – Jordan Stokoe

Assistant Referee 2 – Ross Macleod

Admission:

Adults – £20

Concessions – £15 (16-25, Senior Citizens)

Under 16s – £6

MESSAGE FROM INVERNESS

Ayr support should park in the South car park including buses.

Entry is via turnstiles 7&8 and they will be housed in sections D-F of the South stand (Behind the goal).

The sports bar at the front of the main stand is open to all fans in possession of a valid match ticket from 13:30 with last orders at 14:30 at which time there will be no further admission to the bar and the bar will close at 14:45 when all remaining fans should leave and then enter through the turnstiles

Tickets will be available from the windows at the front of the main stand and possibly from the kiosk but that has yet to be confirmed We recommend fans arrive in good time as there will likely be queues at the ticket windows which are used by both sets of supporters

Club Statement

To all our supporters.

Having recently received yet another offer for one of our players, which at best can be described as derisory, I wish to let you all know the following facts.

There has been a number of bids for our players however NO player will be leaving Somerset Park during this window. The only type of deal acceptable to our club would involve an immediate loan back to Ayr United.

There may be a number of our players being offered pre-contracts by other clubs. I have absolutely no issue with this and I am 100% certain that any player who takes this option will continue to give everything to Ayr United. They will also be informed that pre contracts in Scotland are not recognised by the SFA and are therefore worthless.

Though I will never give up hope of keeping our squad together at the end of the season I recognise that there will be departures. Any player who leaves will go with the very best wishes of everyone connected to Ayr United.

Wherever we finish in the Championship our supporters deserve to watch this special group of boys till the end of the season. Hopefully this will put an end to any speculation through various media outlets and allow us to concentrate on football matches.

Ian McCall

Manager

5 star lottery winners wk 27

FIVE STAR WEEKLY WINNERS

WEEK NUMBER  27        08/01/19

£1000 D0823 Neil Foggo Prestwick
       
MONDAY    
£50 B0135 D Scobie Kincaidston
£10 F4214 H Rooney Prestwick
£10 B0241 D Austrich Ayr
£10 A0844 S Churchill Girvan
       
TUESDAY    
£50 F3241 C Allison Troon
£10 A3344 D Smith Ayr
£10 F2443 G Steel Ayr
£10 A2331 A Bryden Annebank
`      
WEDNESDAY    
£50 E3043 C Cruickshanks Coylton
£10 A0932 M Stevens Muirkirk
£10 B5014 A Dunlop Mossblown
£10 D0521 W McLauhlin Muirkirk
       
THURSDAY    
£50 B4715 J McRobert Ayr
£10 J2242 E Watson New Cumnock
£10 F0633 J woods Ayr
£10 G1332 M McPherson Ayr
       
FRIDAY    
£10 F1331 A Miller Girvan
£10 B0521 S Rae Ayr
£10 C0411 J McCubbin Kincaidston
       

Don’t miss any more chances to win,

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