UEFA Under-17 Championship Elite Round
Scotland 1-0 Lithuania
Somerset Park, Ayr
Scotland embarked on their quest to reach the UEFA Under-17 Championships in Slovenia this summer with a well-deserved 1-0 victory over Lithuania at Somerset Park in Ayr.
Stuart Findlay’s looping header in the 65th minute meant the hosts kicked-off the first of this week’s three matches in winning style.
Scotland, adopting a 4-1-4-1 formation, opened the game in a composed manner with a patient exchange of passes at the back between Stephen Hendrie and Stuart Urquhart.
It was the hosts that created the first attack - Craig Sibbald cutting in from the left to lay off for Cameron Smith, whose shot was just over the bar.
Lithuania were given little time on the ball in the first 10
minutes as Scotland harried.
Sibbald, losing his man with a drag-back in the final third, engineered a one-two with Ryan Finnie who whipped in a dangerous cross only for Marius Suvaizdis to anticipate well and make the interception.
In the 15th minute, the visitors posed their first threat when a cross from the left foot of Deimantas required Ryan Crump’s full concentration.
Islam Feruz, playing centrally, flicked a ball to Sibbald, who returned a well-placed pass, only for the Chelsea forward to shoot over.
Lithuania responded to the Scotland attacks in the 30th minute when Deimantas Petravicius weaved in from the right only to have his shot blocked by Urqhuart.
It was Scotland who ended the first half in the acendency, with Feruz taking his defender left, then right before unleashing a shot - saved low by Suvaizdis.
Immediately after the restart, Scotland won a free-kick around 25 yards out, which Feruz smashed into a disciplined wall.
The half was being played with a faster tempo than the first, and Feruz was dazzling the Lithuanian defenders with tricks in their six-yard box early on.
Lithuania posed a threat when a spinning deflection from a Petravicius cross had to be cleared quickly by Findlay.
In the 60th minute, Smith had the Lithuanian right back on the back foot, only for his cut-back to be anticipated well by Edvinas Dambrauskas.
Scotland 'keeper Ryan Crump stood up well in the 62nd minute when Skirmantas Rakauskas had an effort on goal after dribbing past two defenders.
Three minutes later, Smith sent a cross from the right wing into the 18-yard-box, where Findlay rose above the rest to send a looping header into the top right corner of the net and give Scotland the lead.
The Lithuanians piled on the pressure in the remaining 15 minutes but the Scotland defence held firm to take all three points.
In the other match, Denmark and Iceland drew 2-2 at Cappielow Park. Match report here...
The teams are in action again on Thursday, with Scotland up against Iceland at Dumbarton Stadium, and Denmark facing Lithuania at Somerset Park, Ayr. Entry is £5 for adults, and FREE for under-16s.
Scotland: Ryan Crump, Ryan Finnie, Stephen Hendrie, Stuart Urquhart, Stuart Findlay (C), Darren Petrie, Cameron Smith, Charles Telfer (Jamie Lindsay 60), Lewis Kidd, Craog Sibbald (Fraser Aird 66), Islam Feruz (Denny Johnstone 71)
Subs not used: Jordan Hart (GK), Kyle Turnbull, Darren Ramsay, Andrew Murdoch.
Lithuania: Marius Suvaizdis, Julius Aleksandravičius (C), Edvinas Dambrauskas (Aivaras Meškinis 54), Erikas Skripkinas (Vykintas Slivka 70), Skirmantas Rakauskas (Tadas Lekeckas 41), Simonas Stankevičius, Deimantas Petravičius, Lukas Pangonis, Gabrielius Judickas, Tomas Dombrauskis, Justas Raziūnas.
Subs not used: Edgaras Jonaitis (GK), Kevinas Pavlijus, Rolandas Baravykas, Darius Kazubovičius.
Wednesday, 21 March 2012