East Craigie Swifts will take on East Kilbride in the fifth round of the Scottish Cup after beating Edinburgh City Real by three goals to one. Goals from Keir Gardiner and Ethan Bannon had given the hosts a two-goal lead at the break, with Ethan Coupar adding a third from the penalty spot before the visitors pulled one back through Jack O’Connor’s spot kick in the second half.
The first chance of the game came the way of East Craigie’s Keir Gardener after just four minutes. The striker managed to get away from the City defence but was denied by goalkeeper Joe Jefferey. Edinburgh City’s keeper was called into action minutes later, this time keeping out Jordan Conway’s close range header.
With 19 minutes played, East Craigie went ahead. Cameron Christie’s in-swinging cross evaded the City central defenders and landed on Gardiner’s head, and the East Craigie front man guided the ball past Jeffery, into the net.
Seven minutes later, Edinburgh captain Ethan Williams clattered into Conway on the half way line and picked up a yellow card for his troubles. Conway was replaced by Ethan Bannon. The resulting free kick was sliced into the box by an Edinburgh City defender and the ball eventually broke to Bannon, who acrobatically turned the ball past Jefferey at the near post.
Edinburgh City were becoming increasingly frustrated and had Ross MacFarlane booked for dissent just before the half hour mark. Five minutes before the break Jack O’Connor sent a shot from 25 yards out over the bar. There was still enough time remaining in the half for East Craigie’s Gardiner and Reece Lornie to pick up bookings.
The first half was a fierce affair that saw both sets of players flying in to tackles. This was helped by the Craigie Park surface that caused nearly every player to lose their footing at one point in the first half.