Burgh progress to the 1/4 final of the League Cup
By Kenneth Scott
Musselburgh Athletic 3-0 Hill of Beath Hawthorn
League campaign ended last weekend for both teams. However, there are still a couple of cup competitions to keep Musselburgh’s season going. The visitors to Olivebank for this League Cup 1st round tie was Hill of Beath (3rd v 2nd at end of Conference A league matches). In two league games and 3rd round of South Region Challenge cup; honours were even. Both teams winning and losing one match and drawing the other. So, another tight affair was envisaged.
Musselburgh made two changes to last week. Liam Reid was suspended, after being sent off against Penicuik and Scott McNaughton dropped to the bench. Returning to the team from injuries, were John McManus and Michael Moffat.
First chance of match fell to Mathu King but his shot was blocked by an away side defender. The better option may have been for Mathu to try and go round the defender before shooting for goal. From the corner kick, Jackie Myles shot went over the bar.
On six minutes, the referee blew for a foul against Grierson. However, Hill of Beath defender, Russell Grierson remained on the ground. Following assessment by the physio, Grierson’s match was ended and he was replaced by Kellichan.
One of the Hill of Beath backroom staff, said that Liam Gregory’s studs tangled with Grierson’s laces and his studs got stuck in the ground; (more later)
With 13 minutes played, Hill of Beath attacked up the left wing. Jackie Myles went in for a tackle, and ball bounced in front of Watt. His shot from the edge of the box was safely held by Ally Adams. Shortly after, Hill of Beath right back, Leishman was booked for a foul on Michael Deland.
Another opportunity came Hill of Beath’s way on 20 minutes. Elder had a great chance to score, but ball just cleared the bar. Another injury stopped the match with Greig Callaghan going down. A couple of minutes later, around 25 minutes gone, he was replaced by Jack Gillan.
Two minutes later, from a defensive clearance by Hill of Beath; Bradley Whyte received ball. From the middle of pitch he laid ball to Liam Gregory. From left wing, Liam hit a delightful cross over to the far post. Mathu King was there to head ball past keeper, Hall.
Musselburgh were 1-0 up; a score which remained until half time.
Into the second half and on 52 minutes, ball was with Bradley Whyte. He passed to Liam Gregory. Following further interchange between the two players, from the corner area, Liam Gregory hit a cross into the six-yard box. Another header, this time by Nathan Evans crossed the line and Burgh led 2-0.
With 56 minutes played; some of the home support were screaming for a ‘stone wall’ penalty, but referee waived play on. Soon after, Hill of Beath players were claiming ball came off the arm of a Burgh player. Again the referee disagreed, so no penalty and a corner kick was awarded; which came to nothing.
On 56 minutes, Hill of Beath had a chance to reduce the lead, but Mitchell’s shot was turned round post for a corner. With this escape, Musselburgh were soon on the attack. Ball was played to Michael Deland, who fired a cross to Michael Moffat on right side of pitch. Michael Moffat played a 1-2 with Jackie Myles. Michael took the ball past Patrick and his pass was flicked into the net by Nathan Evans, for his second. Burgh were 3-0 up after 68 minutes.
Two minutes later, Jackie Myles was replaced by Scott McNaughton. Then, Hill of Beath had men in attack. Kirby passed to Watt but his shot from edge of box was saved by Ally Adams. Leishman was none too happy as he felt he was in a better position to score.
Last substitution for Burgh saw Daniel McBay come on for Michael Moffat. Also in the 2nd half, Wright replaced Denton for the away side.
Into the last five minutes and Bradley Whyte played a great ball through to Mathu King. He headed down to Nathan Evans, looking for his hat trick, but his shot was blocked and out for a corner. With three minutes left, Leishman was again on the attack and his cross was punched out by Ally Adams. From this, a shot by Hill of Beath just cleared the bar.
Next play saw Mitchell booked for holding the shirt of Jack Gillan. Hill of Beath continued to press forward. In last minute, Elder’s shot was so high, it cleared the perimeter fence. Then in injury time, Ally Adams produced a great save from the boot of Leishman. From the rebound, Elder was there again, but Ally blocked the shot.
Final whistle and Burgh were winners by 3-0. Second round of cup takes place on Tuesday, 30 April with Camelon the visitors to Olivebank.
Liam Gregory was named supporters club man of the match. Bradley Whyte must have been in with a chance too!
On the injury front, both Russell Grierson and Greig Callaghan were taken to hospital - Russell by ambulance and Greig by the Secretary of Musselburgh.
Russell damaged his ankle ligaments and will be out for 6-8 weeks and it looked like a deep gash to Greig’s head would require stitches. Best wishes and recovery to both players!