BRECHIN City manager Jim Weir was full of praise for veteran goalkeeper Craig Nelson, whose impressive performance on Saturday helped net his side three precious points and earned himself a new contract into the bargain.
The former Hearts and St Johnstone goalkeeper, undoubtedly the best one-man club ‘keeper in the division, made three outstanding saves in the win over Peterhead, giving his team-mates the momentum to go on and win the game.
Signed by Dick Campbell, the Glasgow-based goalkeeper has been an almost ever present ever since and his performances have been remarked upon by home supporters and visitors alike.
Even Peterhead manager Neale Cooper had some kind words to say about the veteran goalkeeper’s display on Saturday.
“Craig is a right good old fashioned pro and if Brechin have tied him up again good luck to them,” he commented after the game. “He deserves everything he gets. Too many young players expect things to happen for them in the game, but Craig is living proof that hard work and playing at the top of your game week-in and week out brings its own rewards.
Weir added: “Our first half performance wasn’t anywhere near good enough.
“The first five ten minutes apart, when we showed like we had some appetite, we lost our way a wee bit and made so many careless mistakes.
“Gary and Whitey made mistakes that weren’t typical of them at all; it was comic book stuff.
“You have to give the ‘Old Yin’ praise in the goal, because I thought he was outstanding.
“In the first half it could have been embarrassing. He had two saves in the first half that were almost ridiculous as they were so good. I am delighted for him and he deserves all the accolades coming to him as he proved again he is a top class goalkeeper.
“He pulled off another great save when we were two-one up, having dominated for a period, then came the sending off.
“We had to make changes at half time and a few guys weren’t happy about that.
“However, in the second half, Daniel coming on gave us a wee lift and really helped us keep the ball better. And Jamie helped us down the right hand side. Jamie knows he hasn’t been at his best and I think the fans here are still to see the best of him.
“McKay caused them real problems. He got backing into players, he linked up.
Strikers need to link up. If they don’t hold the ball up it comes straight back down the centre half’s throat.
“We didn’t do enough of that in the first half to get us up the park and keep us there. McKay changed things for us and I know he can finish as well.
“I have worked with Daniel before and it’s all about application for him.
“I have told him that is what is going to be required. He gave us so much more and did really well for us, and so did Redman.
“McAllister and McLaughlan are big players for us and I thought we lacked that self belief. But once we got the goal we never really looked back.
“David McKenna got his rewards for being busy.
“His first goal came because, when Kevin Byers has played in a good cross to Molloy, Davie is already on the move to get across defenders and fire the ball home.
“When you start in between defenders you will get goals.
“His second goal was an excellent header. If he could take his goals from training into games and gain confidence from that, he would be near the top of the goal-scoring charts.
“He has to take confidence from his second half display on Saturday. His work-rate was excellent and his finishing superb.”