On Sunday 20th May 2018, Raith seniors entered the first ever SPFL FFIT masters 7 aside tournament that was held at Stirling University. This will be a tournament that will be remembered by most of the Raith team as that tournament that we went from 10 people attending to 6 with 2 days to go with the last person pulling out after the closing deadline to register any new players.
As a team it was decided that we would still attend the tournament and play a man short if required
On the day of the tournament the sun was out and the Raith senior lads were excited for the tournament. After some discussion with SPFL trust organisers and the help of our nearest and dearest rivals Dunfermline we managed to secure an additional player and Andrew Proudfoot was a welcome additional to the team.
During the live draw at Hampden Park, Glasgow Raith Seniors were drawn in group B alongside Celtic FFIT, Dunfermline FFIT, Aberdeen FFIT, Morton FFIT and Rangers FFIT.
Group B match 1
Raith seniors vs. Rangers FFIT
Raith seniors first match against Rangers FFIT in what was a tight match with Raith creating the better of the matches opportunities and Rangers having their goalkeeper and some poor finishing for keeping the score level
Final Score 0-0
Group B match 2
Raith Seniors vs. Celtic FFIT
This match went in the same fashion as match 1 with Raith pushing forward and some wasteful finishing once again prevented Raith from getting on the score sheet, Celtic offered some opportunities at goal but nothing that never really threatened Raith’s stand in keeper Jim Harvey.
Final Score 0-0
Group B match 3
Raith Seniors vs. Morton
Raith once again came out the traps quickly and created several opportunities that were well saved by the Morton keeper and again were wasteful in front of goal in what was to be a day to forget for the normal prolific Mark Anderson. During this match Raith were awarded a penalty and Mark stepped up but saw his penalty saved by the Morton keeper.
AS the Raith lads legs began to tire without any subs compared to other teams with 2 or 3 each Morton came more in to the game which saw Jim being called in to action several times including a double save as Morton pushed forward for a winner.
Final Score 0-0
Group B Match 4
Raith Seniors vs. Dunfermline FFIT
Similar to other matches Raith pushed forward looking to get there first goal of the tournament but found the Dunfermline goalkeeper in inspired form who pulled out several top class saves. Dunfermline played lots of good football but there hard work broke down prior to reaching the Raith box with the Raith keeper not making any save of note in this match
Final Score 0-0
Group B Match 5
Raith Seniors vs. Aberdeen FFIT
At this stage Raith and Aberdeen were level on points and Raith knew a win would allow them to top the group.
This game started different to other with the Raith lads looking dead on their feet. Aberdeen pushed forward looking to get the win that would see them win the group.
Aberdeen were hitting Raith on the break and they couldn’t cope with the numbers they piled forward in. After 5 minutes Aberdeen took the lead and Raith conceded their first goal of the tournament.
With some poor marking the Aberdeen player was left unmarked on the edge of the box and he fired without hesitation in to the top corner leaving Jim no chance in saving it.
Aberdeen continued to push forward and were creating chance after chance and Raith had keeper Jim Harvey to thank for keeping them in the tie after making 4 or 5 fantastic saves to keep to score line at 1-0.
With time running out Raith continued to work hard and push forward and when the ball dropped to Paul Dera from about 20 yards out he fired a fantastic shout that looped over the Aberdeen goalkeeper in to the back of the net.
Raith continued to push forward looking for a winner but were once again guilty of missing good opportunities
Final Score 1-1
With 5 draws in a row Raith seniors qualified for the quarterfinals and took on the winners of group A Inverurie.
Raith Seniors vs. Inverurie FFIT (Aberdeen)
Inverurie started the match with 2 players under the age of 25 against a tiring Raith side, as this was match number 6 with no more than a 5 minute break between ties.
Raith once again did not embarrass themselves and pushed forward right from kick off and were guilty of poor finishing once again.
Inverurie scored after 5 minutes when a long ball was misjudged and allowed one of Inverurie young players in on goal and he fired in off of Jim Harvey’s left hand post.
Raith didn’t let this set them back and continued to pass the ball around and try to work an opportunity but the 5 man defence held strong and when Raith did get behind the defence were guilty of poor finishing and some excellent saves by the keeper.
As previous games as Raith pushed for a goal and legs got even more tired Inverurie started to create more chances and Jim Harvey stood strong with a couple of excellent saves. With time running out Raith had one final good opportunity but this summed up Mark Anderson’s as he snatched at it and fired it well wide.
Final Score 0-1
Raith seniors exited in the quarterfinal and by no means let the team down as every single player worked their socks off. Had we had more players available on the day then it might have been a different story but so many games with no subs against teams who were rotating made it extremely difficult for us to get anything from the tournament.