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Redstar reign over Rovers in cup final classic

Redstar FC 6

Dickson, McCallum, McCabe, Anderson

AC Rovers FC 4

Mahoney, Reilly, Irvine, Eaton
  • Redstar FC 6-4 AC Rovers FC (AET)

Liam Dickson | YFS Central Region Journalist

It took two extra time goals to finally separate Redstar FC and AC Rovers in a League Cup Final classic at Ochilview Park.
 
Goals from Thomas-Ryan McCabe and Robbie Dickson in either half of extra time proved to be the difference for Redstar after regulation time had finished 4-4, with both teams having gone ahead twice.   
 
After a relatively quiet opening spell, the game burst into life when Rovers' Sean Mahoney capitalised on an error from the Redstar goalkeeper by dispossessing him and slotting the ball into an empty net.
 
However, a quick-fire reply from Dickson, firing in low from close range after a scramble in the Rovers box, ensured Redstar weren’t behind for long and set the tone for the rest of the match.
 
Only a few moments later, Rovers keeper Jack Stevenson had to be down low to his left to tip behind a Ruairidh Anderson effort that was heading for the bottom corner.
 
Unfortunately for Stevenson, there was nothing he could do from the resulting corner which, taken by Redstar's Robert McCallum, managed to evade everyone and sneak in at the near post to complete the first of what wasn’t the last turnaround of the match.
 
Again, the lead was short lived as not long after Rovers were awarded a penalty when a Redstar defender was judged to have handled the ball on the edge of the six yard box. Midfielder Christopher Reilly stepped up and duly converted to level the match once more.
 
Incredibly, Rovers found themselves ahead again with what was undoubtedly the goal of the match. A Haydon McQue cross was only half cleared by the Redstar defence and was met first time by the onrushing Mark Irvine who lashed a thunderous effort from the corner of the box into the roof of the net with a strike Ronaldo would have been proud of.
 
It was a quality end to what was a quality first half of cup final action.

Any fears that the second half would be unable to live up to the standard of the first was short lived as Redstar once again turned things around. First, a McCabe free kick from a wide area was whipped in, avoiding everyone and nestling in the far corner to level things up.

Not long after, a hopeful Ryan Waugh free kick from the half way line was launched into the box, sailing over the Rovers defence and finding the unmarked Anderson who blasted home first time past the stranded Stevenson.

As the game ticked on it appeared as if, finally, the goals had dried up and Redstar would be crowned League Cup Champions. But there still time for one last twist in regular time as Rovers did well to keep a corner alive, allowing Lewis Eaton to eventually prod home the bouncing ball from two yards out and take the match to extra time.

As the exertion of regular time began to take its toll on both teams, it looked more and more likely that it would be a piece of brilliance or a mistake that would be the difference. Fortunately, it proved to be the former as a quality, low free kick was rifled into the bottom corner by McCabe to give Redstar the crucial first break through in extra time.

Rovers huffed and puffed in search of an equaliser; McQue came close after a period of lovely one touch football played him in down the right but he was unable to keep his effort on target.

As they committed more and more men forward, Redstar hit them with a sucker punch to take the game beyond the reach of Rovers. After some great play down the left, the ball eventually found its way to the feet of Dickson who blasted home into an empty net from a yard out to seal the game and send the Redstar players and their vocal support wild.

Final Result: Redstar FC 6-4 AC Rovers FC (AET)

Lineups

Redstar FC
AC Rovers FC
1. Paul Everett
2. Ryan Waugh
3. Antonio Ianelli
4. Ruairidh Anderson
5. Robert McCallum
6. Jason Stevenson
7. Thomas-Ryan McCabe
8. Ryan McGreechin
9. Robbie Dickson
10. Lewis May
11. Lewis Anderson
12. Gary Bradley
14. Conor Rodger
15. Steven Dunachie
1. Jack Stevenson
2. Greg Black
3. Mathew Lang
4. Mathew Black
5. Brendan Caldwell
7. Sean Mahoney
8. Christopher Reilly
9. Haydon McQue
10. Mark Irvine
11. Lewis Edgar
12. Reece Murray
14. Peter Dolan
16. Lewis Eaton
17. Taylor Campbell
18. Fraser Stewart
Star Player
Redstar FC
AC Rovers FC
Dickson bookmarked the Redstar scoring and was a constant threat all match.
Reilly was at the heart of everything in the middle of the park for Rovers.
Magic Moment
Redstar FC
AC Rovers FC
McCabe's vital extra time breakthrough was a moment of quality.
Irvine's stunning strike was head and shoulders above every other goal in the match - and there was plenty to choose from!

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