MORTON versus Ayr United
Saturday 16 February 2019
Cappielow Park, Greenock
Morton welcome Ayr United to Cappielow tomorrow afternoon as both teams get set to play their fourth game against each other this season.
Jonatan Johansson’s side go into tomorrow’s Ladbrokes Championshp fixture following a 2-1 defeat to Dundee United at Tannadice.
The Ton, currently sitting sixth in the league, will be looking to get their first win since recording an impressive victory against league leaders Ross County on 4th January.
Ayr United, who are currently only three points behind table-topping Staggies, beat Alloa 3-1 in their last outing and will come to Cappielow with their eyes set on recording their third win of the season against the Sinclair Street side.
Johansson’s men will be intent on building on their second half display at Tannadice as they look to get what would be a massive three points that would bring them nearer to a play-off position.
Johansson told gmfc.net: “The game on Saturday will be a tough task for us, Ayr United are enjoying life up the top end of the table and sit only 3 points behind leaders Ross County.
“They have came up after winning the league last year and have continued to build on that positivity, they are direct and are confident in the way they play.
“Ian McCall added some new players in January to strengthen their squad but, in my opinion, their best piece of business was keeping Lawrence Shankland who is a key player for them and that reflects with the amount of goals he has scored.
“As I said though Saturday won’t be an easy game but we know what to expect from Ayr and we know the performance levels we have to be at to get a positive result.
Both Rory McKeown and Denny Johnstone remain sidelined with McKeown still recovering from a calf injury sustained a few weeks back and Johnstone struggling with a long term knee injury that is ruled him out for the majority of the season.
Gary Oliver will also miss tomorrow’s game after the forward twisted his ankle in training this week.
Midfielders Charlie Telfer and Michael Tidser are doubtful and a decision will be made tomorrow morning on whether or not either of them will feature.
Morton Milestones and Significant Stats
1 – Greg Kiltie made his first Morton start two weeks ago against Dundee United at Tannadice.
10 – Striker McHugh is Morton’s top scorer this term with ten goals in 23 starts and six substitute appearances.
11 – Midfielder Michael Tidser is Morton’s top creator with 11 direct assists in 25 starts.
300 – Captain Jim McAlister made his 300th appearance for the club after coming off the bench at East Fife last month.
Dunoon native Declan McDaid came through the youth ranks at Cappielow and made one first-team appearance before electing to move to Partick Thistle in the summer of 2013.
Striker Lawrence Shankland fired the Honest Men to the League One title last term with 29 goals and is well known to Ton fans having spent the second half of 2016/17 on loan here, scoring four times in 18 appearances.
Ian McCall added midfielder Andy Murdoch to his squad in the summer. The former Rangers man spent two seasons at Cappielow, making 75 appearances and scoring four goals before departing at the end of last term.
At the same time as former Greenock gaffer McCall brought Murdoch on board, he also secured the loan signing of goalkeeper Ross Doohan. Doohan was brought in as cover for Derek Gaston last year but did not feature.
Head to Head
Sat 22 Apr 2017: Morton 1-1 Ayr United (Ladbrokes Championship)
Sat 14 Jul 2018: Ayr United 3-1 Morton (Betfred Cup, Group E)
Sat 29 Sep 2018: Morton 1-5 Ayr United (Ladbrokes Championship)
Sat 17 Nov 2018: Ayr United 0-0 Morton (Ladbrokes Championship)
Last Time Round
Morton hit the post and saw a last-gasp Gregor Buchanan header cleared off the line as they were held to a goalless draw by 10-man Ayr United at Somerset Park in November.
The Honest Men were reduced to 10 men after Craig Moore was dismissed for lashing out in response to Buchanan aggressively kicking the ball clear from under him.
Morton would spend the remainder of the match on the front foot as they looked to press home their numerical advantage over an unflinching Ayr side determined not to succumb.
They looked to have made the breakthrough right at the death when towering defender Buchanan headed a Ross MacLean corner towards the net – only to see Michael Moffat pop up on the line to clear and deny Ton the victory.
Referee: Colin Steven
Assistant one: Sean Carr
Assistant two: Ross McLeod
Admission prices are:
Adult | Fan Card: £18, Ticket: £20
Concession (Over 65, Student, and Under 21s) | Fan Card: £13, Ticket: £15
Child (12 – 17)^ | Fan Card: £5, Ticket: £5
Child (Under-12)* | Fan Card: £0, Ticket: £1
^Proof of entitlement must be provided for concessionary tickets, while proof of age is required for children between 12 and 17 and those between 18 and 20.
*Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
Please note, prices apply irrespective of the day or time of purchase.
Supporters are asked to purchase in advance where possible in order to avoid excessive queues at the ticket office on a matchday.
Briefs can still be bought from the following outlets:
Smiths of Greenock – During opening hours, 9am – 5.30pm
Sinclair Street ticket office – Saturday matchdays from 12pm to 3pm
Tickets can also be purchased in advance online at www.gmfctickets.co.uk or by calling the club on 01475 723571. These can be collected at the ticket office on matchday.
All home fixtures are also available to be pre-loaded onto fan cards via Interstadia’s dedicated club website, www.gmfctickets.co.uk.