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Live: Quickfire double from Stewart sees Ross County come from behind against Arbroath


By Andrew Henderson

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Full time thoughts

If anything, Ross County were less impressive in the second half than they were the first, but they won't care one bit as they got the goals they needed to win.

It was an incredible strike from Dale Hilson to put Arbroath ahead, it would be interesting to see if Ross Laidlaw could have done more from a different angle, but it would have been so easy for heads to drop after going behind and they didn't.

All it took was one five-minute spell for them to turn the game around on it's head, and despite one or two scares along the way, they held out.

The main thing from Stuart Kettlewell's point of view is that this puts them in control of the group, with their fate still in their own hands if they are to qualify for the second round.

Full time: Ross County 2–1 Arbroath

89' What a chance!

Arbroath could, and maybe should, be level after Michael Ruth misses a header from just a few yards out.

The on-loan Aberdeen man had to rise high, but he just slightly mistimed his jump and his shot went over the bar.

88' A good couple of touches down the right for Arbroath gives them the chance to break forward, the ball comes out to Virtanen on the edge of the box and it looks like his shot is deflected behind, but the referee gives a goal kick.

83' Final change of the evening as Oli Shaw comes on for Mckay

78' Gardyne the latest name to be added to the referee's book

75' Hilson does well to force his way into the box from the left side, but he wildly shoots from a tight angle and the ball flies into the stands.

Dick Campbell responds by making a triple substitution, bringing off McKenna, Stewart and Donnelly and bringing on Kris Doolan, Connor Smith and Gavin Swankie.

68' Stewart puts County ahead

Ross Stewart has a second this evening, this time from the penalty spot.

Regan Charles-Cook beat Derek Gaston to the ball, but was wiped out for his troubles and Steven McLean pointed to the spot.

Stewart stepped up, and like he already has on multiple occasions this season found the net, sending the Arbroath keeper the wrong way to make it 2–1 to the Staggies.

66' McKenna booked for Arboath

65' Stewart draws Staggies level

Ross County are back on level terms thanks to Ross Stewart.

It was a wicked cross from Connor Randall just on the edge of the area, and he found Stewart just a yard or two out, where the forward did everything right to head the ball down and bounce it into the net.

58' Double change for County as Michael Gardyne and Harry Paton come on for Hylton and Jordan Tillson.

Coll Donaldson was also down and needed his shoulder looked at by the physio, but he looks fine to continue.

55' Booking for Arbroath's Virtanen after a crunching challenge on Charles-Cook.

52' Double change for Arbroath as Bobby Linn and David Gold come off for Michael Ruth and James Craigen.

49' Hilson fires Arbroath ahead

An error from Alex Iacovitti allows Luke Donnelly to advance into the County half, and his ball inside earns a free kick.

Dale Hilson steps up around 25 yards out from goal, and fires it straight into the top corner.

It was some hit from the Arbroath number nine, with the only thing making Laidlaw think he should have stopped it was the angle the shot came in at towards his near post.

47' Billy Mckay just about gets Stewart's cross under control, unmarked at the far post, but he blazes his shot over the bar.

45' Steven McLean blows his whistle to get the second half started!

Half time thoughts

Ross County have come into the match more and more as the half went on – maybe as Arbroath ran out of steam after pressing high up the park early on.

That meant that where before the Staggies could keep the ball deep in their own half, by the 45-minute mark they were controlling the middle of the park and looking to push further up.

This side has some really good moments – Hylton is impressive and Charles-Cook had some flashes on the right flank – but the understanding isn't there yet in a team that has quite a few new signings.

County look like they are comfortable, and with the scores being level they shouldn't switch off like last week, but I still get the feeling the best is yet to come from them.

Half time: Ross County 0–0 Arbroath

39' Charles-Cook is inches away from turning the ball into the net, sliding in trying to reach Hylton's cross with the outside of his right boot after being left totally on his own just inside the box.

37' Tillson follows his teammate into the book after sliding in on McKenna.

35' First booking of the game goes to Hylton for a cynical challenge.

24' Great show of perseverance – a mix of pace and strength – from Regan Charles-Cook leaves two defenders in his wake, but he cannot quite pick out a teammate in the middle of the park.

18' Early substitution for Ross County as Alex Iacovitti comes on for Callum Morris. No obvious injury, but there must be some knock to make a switch at the back this early.

16' Jermaine Hylton goes close after the referee plays a good advantage when Stewart gets taken down.

The Arbroath defence seemed to expect the free kick to be given, allowing Hylton the chance to race in behind and try to lift the ball over Gaston, but it rolls just wide of the mark.

14' Great save!

Connor Randall is afforded the time out wide to cross, but his ball into the middle is deflected and loops up into the danger zone where Ross Stewart is unmarked.

He heads at goal, but Derek Gaston makes a brilliant reaction save to push the ball over the bar.

12' Good pressing from Arbroath making it difficult for County to move up the pitch. Dick Campbell is screaming for his side to challenge more for the second balls, which are mostly County's right now, but his side are not doing too badly from then on.

4' Vital touch from Ricky Little sends a Ross Stewart pass that looked like it was about to tee up a simple Billy Mckay tap in out for a corner. Surely saved his side from going behind there!

Kick off!

We are under way here in Dingwall!

15 minutes to kick off – the teams!

Five changes for Ross County as Coll Donaldson and Connor Randall return from injury and suspension respectively, while Ross Stewart, Jordan Tillson and Charlie Lakin – for his first start – come into the starting line up.

Keith Watson, Alex Iacovitti, Iain Vigurs, Harry Paton and Oli Shaw all drop to the bench.

Dick Campbell again rotates his Arbroath side with six changes – Colin Hamilton, Gavin Swankie, Kris Doolan, Michael Ruth, Connor Smith and James Craigen drop out, with David Gold, Michael McKenna, Dale Hilson, Bobby Linn, Luke Donnelly and Miko Virtanen all starting instead.

Ross County: 1. Ross Laidlaw, 2. Connor Randall, 3. Carl Tremarco, 5. Callum Morris, 9. Billy Mckay, 14. Jermaine Hylton, 17. Regan Charles-Cook, 19. Charlie Lakin, 22. Jordan Tillson, 25. Coll Donaldson, 27. Ross Stewart

Substitutes: 31. Ross Munro, 7. Michael Gardyne, 8. Oli Shaw, 10. Michael O'Connor, 11. Iain Vigurs, 12. Tom Grivosti, 15. Keith Watson, 16. Alex Iacovitti, 24. Harry Paton.

Arbroath: 1. Derek Gaston, 2. Jason Thomson, 4. Ricky Little, 5. Thomas O'Brien, 7. David Gold, 8. Michael McKenna, 9. Dale Hilson, 11. Bobby Linn, 12. Scott STewart, 15. Luke Donnelly, 22. Miko Virtanen.

Substitutes: 21. Scott Gallacher, 10. Gavin Swankie, 14. Kris Doolan, 16. Michael Ruth, 17. Connor Smith, 28. James Craigen.

Referee: Steven McLean



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