- Sat 23 NOV 2019 KO 1:45 pm
- Macron Scottish Junior Cup| 4th round
- Meadow Park, Irvine
- Irvine Meadow 0 (0)
- Glenafton Athletic 0 (0)
Squeeky Bum Time as Defiant Defences keep the Sheets Clean at Meadow
Glenafton made one change from the eleven that started in the league victory over Auchinleck Talbot last Saturday with Cameron Marlow replacing the injured Ryan McChesney. Incredibly today was only the third meeting between the Glens and Irvine Meadow in the Scottish Junior Cup. The first of which was in the final at Hampden 1962/63 when Meadow defeated the Glens 2-1 and then again in 2001/02 when Glens won 2-0 at Meadow Park in the 5th round. The Meadow currently sit 3rd in the Premiership with Glenafton three points behind in 6th place.
The visitors forced a corner kick on 3 minutes that was cleanly punched clear by keeper Patrick O’Neil. Matthew Reilly was looking lively down the left with two good runs, one ending with a cross field pass that was cleared and another ending with James Latta ushering the ball out for a goal kick.
Latta’s header then cut out a long ball up the wing from former Talbot team-mate Craig Pettigrew and the ball gathered by Andy McLaughlin to break down the right before cutting inside to pick out Brendan Sharpe on the edge of the box who was forced wide before firing a low angled shot that slipped beyond the far post.
On 13 minutes Colin Spence lobbed a ball into a busy box where Pettigrew and Sharpe challenged for the ball and as it ran free in one direction the Meadow striker ran into Pettigrew and tumbled to the ground, too theatrically for the close by referee’s liking an earned a yellow card.
Back came Glens and O’Brien was alert to rush far from his line to beat Reilly to Menzies’ long ball into the box. Played continued at a frantic level with each side quickly closing down their opponents in a packed midfield as possession changed hands regularly and often through some petty free kicks.
On 18 minutes Lee Gallacher was bundled off the ball by Neil Slooves and although the midfielder’s free kick from 28 yards beat the wall it sailed well over the bar. Soon after the Glens broke down a Meadow attack allowing Dale Moore to release Reilly to race down the left before cutting into the box where he gave Latta the slip and as Callum Gow closed in got a shot away from the edge of the six-yard box that was comfortably held by the keeper.
Play continued to get bogged down and scrappy in the midfield for long spells and the best of the half chances on offer fell to the visitors.
On 28 minutes Pettigrew attempted to break the deadlock in style by launching a high ball from the centre circle that had O’Neil backtracking anxiously to his goal-line in time for him to see it dip over the bar. The centre back then initiated the next Glens attack by threading a ball through the middle for Moore to gather and drive into the box before firing a low shot that the keeper pushed round the post. The corner kick was headed clear out the box and fell for Frye only for his shot to sail high and wide of target.
Glens continued to press and on 31 minutes had strong appeals for a penalty kick turned down. Gallacher’s lob high into the box saw Slooves choose to duck out the header and leave the ball for his keeper only for Reilly to get between them both before Slooves realised his predicament and barged the Glens man from behind allowing the ball to fall freely into the hands of a grateful O’Neill.
Meadow then enjoyed a good spell of pressure after a peach of a ball over the top from Spence picked out Jared Willet deep and wide on the left to whip a ball to the near post for Sharpe only for Menzies to make a brilliant block at the expense of a corner-kick; Meadow’s claims that a hand was used werewaved away. The kick was played short and after being cleared once it was switched from left to right where Mark McLellan’s ball into the box for Sharpe was overhit and collected by Wilson. Soon after Sharpe stripped Menzies of the ball to race into the box with the Glens captain in pursuit, however the striker’s touch was poor and the ball run safely into the hands of Wilson before he tumbled to the ground again much to the anger of the Glens defence.
At the other end Gallacher’s header from the centre circle was hooked forward into the air by Moore but as the ball dropped Slooves mistimed his attempted clearance allowing Reilly to chest the ball and drive into the box with the defender giving chase where he recovered the ball at the goal-line; Glens half-hearted appeals that the big centre back had again pushed the Glens man off the ball were not entertained.
Reilly then made a lightning break down the right to the bye-line outstripping Lee McCrea to cut the ball into the box before being caught late on the ankle by the defender. Play continued and Moore recovered the ball to try and pick out Gallacher at the back post, but the offside flag brought the move to an end.
HT Meadow 0 Glens 0
Glens mopped up an early Meadow attack before mounting one of their own after Gallacher nicked the ball from Meadow’s short throw-in and held off Spence to set up a shot from distance that O’Neil did well to get down low and hold. Shortly after the visitors won three corner-kicks in quick succession the third being comfortably plucked from the air by the keeper.
Meadow responded with a good break down the right where McLaughlin gathered a short throw-in from near the flag to whip the ball high into the goalmouth which Wilson clutched cleanly under the bar as Sharpe challenged
The second half soon assumed the format of the first with plenty of effort and commitment exhibited by both sides that continued to effectively cancel each other out in the midfield battles which generated a couple of yellow cards for good measure.
McCrea launched a free kick into the box and although Gow won the aerial battle his header dropped harmlessly into the arms of Wilson
On 57 minutes Glens brought on Dan Orsi for Lee Gallacher.
Meadow pushed forward again trough Sharpe picking out Spence but the former Talbot player was robbed on the outskirts of the box by Reilly who in trademark style burst down the left leaving some blue shirts puffing their cheeks in his wake and others on his tail before Gow halted him on his tracks six yards from the by-line; the defender then clearing the free-kick that followed.
On 65 minutes Meadow replaced Colin Spence with Reece Pearson.
Willard broke down a Glens move on the left deep in his own half before setting off on a long diagonal lung bursting run at pace before feeding McLaughlin tight on the right wing on the outskirts of box only for Alan Cairns to seemingly win the ball but to receive a yellow card for his robust challenge instead. The free-kick saw Wilson rise unchallenged to collect the ball with ease.
On 71 minutes Glens brought on Joe Andrew for Cameron Marlow and Meadow replaced Brendan Sharpe with Eddie McTernan.
A sustained period of pressure from the visitors began with Frye winning a corner-kick on the right which fell for Mick McCann only for his shot from 10 yards to be deflected wide for another corner which eventually arrived at the feet of Orsi only for his shot from the corner of the box to also be deflected wide. It was almost third corner lucky as Frye’s late run into the box caught the Meadow defence cold but his powerful diving header whizzed inches over the bar. The game remained deadlock with 15 minutes to go.
On 76 minutes Meadow made their final substitution with Darren Jones coming on for Lee McCrea.
Reilly then weaved into the box before unleashing a shot that deflected off Latta and was saved on the bye-line by O’Neill to prevent another corner. Menzies then took matters into his own hands, with a break through the middle ended by a trip from an exasperated McLaughlin. The overhit free-kick was collected easily by O’Neil.
Another break down the left by Reilly saw him skip past Latta only for Slooves to cut out his cut-back across goal to earn Glens their ninth corner of the match which was powerfully headed clear by Slooves.
In the closing minutes the game raged back and forth as both sides went in chase of a winning goal. McLellan did well to cut in from the right and fashion a shot from the edge of the box, however it lacked the power or direction to test Wilson.
At the other end Reilly cut in from the left to flick the ball into the box for Andrew to trap before cracking an angled shot from 8 yards that O’Neill held tight as McCann waited to pounce on any loss ball. The keeper then dealt with Frye’s low trundling shot from 20 yards with the same ease.
Three minutes into added time and his counterpart David Wilson, the less busy of both keepers throughout regulation time, pulled off the save of match to ensure the game went to a replay. The Glens were hemmed in at the right-hand corner flag from where a throw in was intercepted by the head of Latta to knock it deftly to the feet of McLaughlin on the 18 yard line to square it to McLellan who quickly thread it through between Glens defenders to Jones who completed the one-two with a delicate touch to set up McLellan who seemed to have picked his spot from 14 yards out only for Wilson to dive low and push it round the post with a strong hand. In stark contrast the Meadow’ hands that had been raised prematurely in celebration dropped quickly to hold their heads in disbelief.
Still a final chance remained for the home side as McLaughlin delivered a perfect corner-kick to the heart of the six-yard box only for Pettigrew to beat Slooves to the jump and head the ball clear with the last touch of the game.
FT Meadow 0 Glens 0
GLENAFTON ATHLETIC: 1. David Wilson 2. Ally Park 3. Alan Cairns 4. Craig Menzies 5. Craig Pettigrew 6. Cameron Marlow (12. Joe Andrew) 7. Findlay Frye 8. Dale Moore 9. Mick McCann 10. Lee Gallacher (14. Dan Orsi) 11. Matthew Reilly Subs 15. Ryan Nisbet 16. Ryan McChesney 17. Craig Burns (gk)
IRVINE MEADOW XI: 1. Patrick O’Neil 2. James Latta 3. Lee McCrea (12. Darren Jones) 4. Neil Slooves 5. Callum Gow 6. Ryan Carnwarth 7. Mark McLellan 8. Colin Spence (14. Reece Pearson) 9. Brendan Sharpe (16. Eddie McTernan) 10. Andy McLaughlin 11. Jared Willet 15. Patrick Woods 21. Adam McLean (gk)