RHU Amateurs boss Stewart Maule opted to focus on the positives last Saturday after watching his side fall to a 4-2 loss away to Callander Thistle AFC.

Looking to build on their memorable 2-1 win away to Milton AFC in their previous match, Rhu made the trip to Perthshire hoping injuries and availability wouldn’t catch up with them.

Ross Jeffrey secured all three points against Milton with a sensational last minute volley, and he was on target once again with another stunning half-volley, leaving the Callander keeper no chance 15 minutes in at McLaren Community Leisure Centre.

Rhu’s lead didn’t last long, however, with the home side immediately breaking away from the restart to haul themselves level.

READ MORE: Last-gasp goal earns Rhu a dramatic win away to Milton

After their bright start, things quickly turned for the visitors when they failed to properly clear their lines just before the half hour mark.

After a scramble in the box, the ball fell to an unmarked Callander striker who caught it sweetly to send it beyond Rhu keeper William Brown and turn the match on its head.

Despite the setback, Rhu continued to play well in the first-half and should have gone in level at the break after Jeffrey got on the end of Callum Smith’s powerful cross only to rattle the post with his effort as they went in trailing.

Maule’s half-time team talk seemed to do the trick with his side flying out the blocks after the restart.

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Piling on the pressure at the beginning of the second-half, Rhu were handed a way back into the match after Smith and Jeffrey linked up well once again, with the former fouled in the box.

The Callander keeper did well to deny Jeffrey from 12 yards from the resulting spot-kick, but Jamie Paterson was on hand to turn in the rebound to level proceedings.

With the teams both throwing caution to the wind, there was more goals in the game as they both went in search of the winner.

Showing just a bit more quality in the attacking third, the hosts restored their lead midway through the second-half after a free-kick eluded the Rhu defence and sat up perfectly for the Callander striker to nod home beyond Brown at the back post.

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As Maule’s side pushed for a leveller, they were caught short at the back with Callander adding a fourth late on to secure the win and all three points.

And while the gaffer was of course disappointed with the defeat, pinpointing injuries and availability as the reason for the loss, he insists his side only need to look back at an 8-1 loss away to Callander last season to see just how far they have come. 

“Just like Rangers in the Scottish Premiership, we’ve not managed to hit the heights of our pre-winter break performances,” Maule said.

“However, what this group of players has achieved has been incredible as we sat in January with the same points total as the whole of last season.

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“We are unfortunately missing too many key players too often right now and it had to catch up with us eventually. 

“Saturday was that day. We huffed and puffed and worked incredibly hard, but Callander managed to convert their chances. 

“On the plus side we lost the same fixture 8-1 last season, so we were way better than that. 

“We will regroup and come back stronger because it’s what we do.”

* This Saturday, February 8, Rhu return to home soil and a league fixture against Kilsyth Community FC. Kick-off at Ardenconnel Park is at 2pm.