Plenty of positives

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Eric Macleod insists there was very little between his side and Shetland when the two islands met in a friendly match at the weekend.

The Western Isles Island Games Association Men’s Football team manager saw his side go down 3-1 but he was buoyed by a confident performance and one which showed his side is moving in the right direction ahead of the summer’s NatWest Island Games in Gotland, Sweden.

“We are very pleased with the performance but obviously not the result,” he said.

“We lost an early goal which hit us hard and we need to make sure we start better to allow us to grow into matches. The other two goals we lost were also bad defensively and they came from direct balls down the side of our CBs after losing possession deep in the opposition half so we need to defend the transition phases better.”

He added: “That said, we were really pleased with many aspects of our play, both in and out of possession, and we will continue to work hard from now until Gotland to improve our game, both as individuals and as a squad.

“The effort and commitment from this group of players is first class and they just need to put together a more consistent ninety minutes to give themselves a better chance of getting something from these type of matches where there is very little between the two teams.”

Shetland took the lead inside a minute before the Western Isles rallied and came back into the match.

A series of half-time subs unsettled the Western Isles rhythm and they lost two goals in quick succession on the counter attack. Sub Luke Mackay pulled a goal back for the Western Isles.

WIIGA: James Macleod (Lochs); Gordon Campbell (West Side); Alexander Macdonald (Point ; Ali Gillies (Point); Domhnall Mackay (Carloway); Peter Mackenzie (Lochs); Eachainn Miller (Carloway ; Robert Jones (Point); Innes Iain Morrison (West Side); Robert Mackenzie (Lochs); and Stewart Munro (Point). Subs: Gordon Mackenzie (Point); Angus Macdonald (Point); DI Maclennan (Carloway); Archie Macdonald (Carloway); Martiann Shields (Wes); Luke Mackay (West Side)