THORN ATHLETIC picked up a fully merited victory in their Caledonian Premier League match against Glasgow University on Saturday, with the three points being more than welcomed by players and staff alike after an enforced month-long hiatus from league action due to unplayable playing surfaces and cup commitments. An Ian Paterson goal was sandwiched in between a Jordan Verracchia brace to put the Thorn 3-0 up going into the second period and the three goals coming within an eight-minute spell appeared to dishearten Glasgow University, who never really looked like fashioning a route back into the game during the second half.
Muir McCluskey rounded off the scoring just twelve minutes into the second half by making it 4-0 after latching onto an inspired pass from John Martin, who grabbed his second assist of the game and helped propel his side up to third place in the table. Thorn Athletic manager Johnny McEwan was relieved to get some league points on the board and was keen to highlight how much the contribution of the entire team played in securing a comfortable victory.
McEwan said following the win: “We were excellent in the first half and put the game to bed pretty quickly after getting the breakthrough. We missed a few good chances early on and it made you wonder if it was going to be our day, but when we got our noses in front we kicked on. We got a lot of joy down the left-hand side in the first half through John Martin and that led to a couple of goals.”
McEwan added: “Second half we huffed and puffed a bit which meant we only added another one to the tally, but it was good to get back to winning ways in the league. What was equally as pleasing for us was to keep a clean sheet, the defence have been playing well and hopefully it continues.”
The Thorn will be aiming to make it a positive end to what has been a fixture bare November during this Saturday’s away trip to face Cambria. They’ll have ambitions of making it three league wins in a row as they look to continue their ascent up the league table. Although McEwan expects a tough encounter against a Cambria side that will be eager to bounce back from their 3-2 defeat to Glasgow Harp in their previous league fixture.
Ahead of this weekend’s match McEwan added: “We need to get a bit of momentum going again, especially ahead of our Scottish Cup fourth round tie the week after. Cambria are dangerous opposition but hopefully if we can keep our levels up then we can get another good result. Cambria also had a free week last week so they will be fresh. We have Dean Scott available again after suspension and a few of the injuries are starting to clear up so fingers crossed.”