Three points for Raith Rovers after Ayr raid sees players red carded

Raith Rovers took all three points on the road against Ayr United in a match where both sides had players seeing red.

Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 8:33 pm
Updated Wednesday, 8th September 2021, 8:53 am
Dario Zanatta celebrates after scoring Raith's second goal (Pic: Charlie Gilmour)

Raith made one change from the SPFL Trust Trophy Trust win over Forfar with Aidan Connolly coming in for Matej Poplatnik who dropped to the bench.

With just a minute gone Raith went close when there was a scramble in the six yard box following a cross from Liam Dick and on 13 minutes they took the lead when striker Ethon Varian headed in a superb in-swinging cross from right back Reghan Tumilty.

Former Ayr player Dario Zanatta was booked for a touch of over exuberance during the celebrations but nine minutes later he got some form of revenge.

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A Connolly free kick was only partially cleared to the edge of the box where Zanatta, who spent last season at Somerset Park, picked it up and had time to cut inside onto his left foot and curl the ball low into the net.

Half time arrived with Rovers comfortably in control and well deserving of their two-goal lead.

Ayr started the second half with a bit more purpose and keeper Jamie MacDonald required treatment after just a minute after coming off worse in a 50-50 challenge with Tomi Adeloye but was able to continue.

McGlynn’s men were soon back in the match though, and on 68 minutes broke three on two from an Ayr corner.

Zanatta slipped the ball through to sub Kai Fotheringham who elected to cross when a shot looked a better option and the chance was lost.

On 74 minutes minutes Tumilty forced goalkeeper Aidan McAdams into a good save before a crazy five minutes where three players received their marching orders.

Ayr sub Jonathan Afolabi was shown a straight red for a poor tackle on Dick, whilst Blaise Riley-Snow and United sub Aaron Muirhead were both given deserved second yellows for late challenges.

Raith pushed for a third and the 82nd minute saw a great run and shot from Fotheringham but it was just too high, then Tumilty was close with another effort with two minutes remaining.

A minute into injury team the Honest Men's McAdams pulled off a great save from a high, curling effort from Dylan Tait.