Campbell thrilled as on-fire Forfar scalp title favourites

Pic credit Christopher Coutts. Dale Hilson celebrates his goal.
Pic credit Christopher Coutts. Dale Hilson celebrates his goal.

Forfar Athletic manager Dick Campbell was delighted with his side’s performance in their 2-0 victory over title favourites Dunfermline Athletic on Saturday.

Dale Hilson and Darren Dods found the net in the second half as the Loons dominated Jim Jefferies’ side.

And the manager was glowing in his praise for Hilson, who he described as being “on fire” this season.

He said: “We deserved to win the game. Both teams played as well as they could play, but the difference is the goals. We played some good stuff and so did Dunfermline.

“We scored a great goal through Dale Hilson who’s been absolutely on fire for us. Second goal, Darren Dods and his natural enthusiasm, he’s even kissing the badge in a Forfar jersey.

“But two for and nothing against versus a team of that calibre speaks volumes for Forfar. I’m very happy with that.”

Dick made three changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Stranraer as Dods, Stephen Husband and Gavin Swankie replaced Andrew Steeves, Gavin Malin and James

Jonathan Page nodded just over the bar after five minutes, wasting a terrific chance.

Ex-Par Husband found Chris Templeman but his header looped onto the roof of the net before Chigozie Ugwu had a glorious opportunity, slicing wide after he was played through clean on goal - Aaron James made terrific progress to track the striker and it looked to be his presence that put Ugwu off his stride.

Husband almost grabbed a goal against his former employers on the quarter hour mark, Hilson’s cut back found him inside the box but his shot was deflected over before Stuart Malcolm headed past the post from the resultant corner.

Forfar wasted a fantastic opportunity for the opener in the 34th minute, Danny Denholm working his way to the byline before cutting the ball back to the unmarked Hilson, who took a touch to prepare to fire home but before he could pull the trigger the ball was nicked off his toes.

Within a minute of the second half kicking off, Hilson lashed wide and went closer to scoring in the 50th minute, Templeman swinging in a cross that he met with a header that looked destined to fly in at the back post but Ryan Scully pulled off a great save to deny him.

Rab Douglas made an even better save five minutes later, sub Ross Drummond’s cross swerved towards goal but the big keeper pushed it out, only as far as Michael Moffat and his shot from close range forced a fantastic reaction save.

And the Loons were in front in the 57th minute when Hilson collected the ball 30 yards out before letting fly with a scorching effort into the bottom left corner.

Ross Millen almost carved out a chance in the 72nd minute but his cross came to nothing.

Dods then made sure of the points a minute later with his bullet header from James Dale’s free kick.

Dunfermline had several chances in the dying stages with Douglas on fine form, making a double save from Moffat that had the home fans applauding wildly.

Hilson had to be taken off after taking the worst of a 50/50 challenge before the referee blew for full time.

Forfar Athletic: Douglas, Dunlop, James, Malcolm, Dods, Husband (Dale 69), Hilson (Fotheringham 89), Young, Templeman, Swankie, Denholm (Kader 81).

Subs not used: Malin, Steeves, Smith, Salmon.

Dunfermline Athletic: Scully, Millen, Whittle (Drummond 46), Martin, Page, Geggan, Byrne (Thomson 62), Spence, Moffat, Falkingham, Ugwu (El Bakhtaoui 80)

Subs not used: Forbes, Stirling, Williamson, Goodfellow.