Forfar draw with Livingston after excellent display

Dale Hilson gives Forfar Athletic the lead against Livingston.
Dale Hilson gives Forfar Athletic the lead against Livingston.

Dale Hilson scored his first goal since signing for Forfar Athletic to help the Loons to a 1-1 draw with Championship side Livingston on Thursday evening.

Hilson struck at the end of the first half, giving Dick Campbell’s side a well deserved lead after a highly impressive display from the hosts.

Darren Hill, Chris Templeman and two trialists were replaced by Ross Salmon, Darren Dods, James Dale and Dale Hilson.

Danny Denholm and Dods had to be alert in the early stages to quell Livi attacks but the Loons soon exerted their dominance over their opponents as Gavin Swankie forced a good save from Andy Jamieson in the Livingston goal.

Beautiful football between Dale and Omar Kader saw Swankie somehow manage to get a cross away but there was nobody in the right area to take advantage.

Hilson then went close, powering through two defenders before seeing his effort blocked.

Swankie then had three great opportunites in quick succession but he was unable to beat Jamieson.

It was liquid football from the Forfar attack and Hilson played a smart ball up to Swankie, who backheeled it into the former’s path - Hilson battering the ball right at Jamieson from eight yards out.

They were turning the screw but it looked like the first half would end goalless until Dale played a terrific ball inside from the right towards Swankie, who cleverly dummied taking the centre half with him, allowing Hilson to collect before sending a delightful curled effort around Jamieson.

Livingston made eight changes at the break and that gave them the extra legs to go on and dominate the second half.

Stuart Malcolm saw an excellent header go just wide after half time before he was replaced by a trialist.

It was 1-1 moments later when Gary Glen slipped the ball through to Kyle Jacobs who easily rolled the ball under the charging Ross Salmon.

There were further chances at both ends with Livi enjoying much more of the ball.

It looked like Forfar had got the win right at the death when Swankie played a terrific ball through the defence for Denholm, but somehow his effort came back off the post and away to safety when it looked destined to hit the back of the net.

Manager Dick Campbell was thrilled with the performance, saying: “I thought we played really well. Albeit Livingston started to overpower us in the second half with their full time fitness, we had the best two chances right at the end of the game.”

Forfar: Salmon; Dunlop, Malcolm, Dods, Trialist; Kader, Malin, Dale, Denholm; Hilson, Swankie. Subs: Douglas, Templeman, Trialist, Keillor, Smith, McLellan, Yates.