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Ross County dominate Forres in friendly


By Andrew Henderson


From the start County found themselves on the front foot against their Highland League opponents.

They cut through the Mighty Cans' midfield with ease, winning a series of corners to establish their dominance.

That was how they took the lead after eight minutes too, with Daniel Armstrong's delivery finding McManus unmarked in the box.

The forward's header towards goal was only half-stopped, and Keith Watson was on hand to force the ball in at his second attempt.

Once the Staggies got their second, the floodgates opened.

McManus skipped past a couple of challenges to find space and picked out the bottom corner from 20 yards for County's second of the afternoon.

Declan McManus starred as Ross County thrashed Forres in their first pre-season friendly. Picture: Ken Macpherson
Declan McManus starred as Ross County thrashed Forres in their first pre-season friendly. Picture: Ken Macpherson

And by the time three minutes had passed after that strike it would be 4-0, with Harry Paton first drilling past Euan Storrier from the edge of the box and then McManus getting his second with a tap in.

It was five before the interval, as another corner was not cleared with young full-back Jack Murray this time on hand to convert.

Coutny started the second half where they left off, and it was soon 6-0. McManus clinched his hat trick in the 50th minute, tapping in from close range after Blair Spittal had done well on the left.

Brian Graham then converted from the penalty spot, sending Storrier the wrong way, after Armstrong was brought down inside the area.

Graham would double his tally just before the hour mark by getting on the end of an Armstrong and guiding the ball in with ease.

He too would get his hat trick with another header, this time from McManus' chip into the area.

McManus got his fourth of the afternoon with just over 15 minutes left on the clock, finding acres of space inside the box but needing two tries to find the net.

Even with such a commanding lead, Ross County did not let up, and Armstrong would make it 11-0 in the 82nd minute after some excellent build-up play from Paton.



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