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Livi hit late double to sink Star

Written by  Redhall Star YFC

Fixture: Redhall Star 2000s v Livingston FCBC
Competition: South East Region Cup
Venue: Meggetland
Date: 15/03/15
Redhall Star and Livingston FCBC met in the League Cup Semi Final at Meggetland. It was a tense, tight affair with limited chances in the first half but the second half was more open with chances for both sides. The deadlock was broken, with 15 minutes to go, by the visitors as their speed merchant up top burst clear to fire home. Redhall poured forward but it was Livingston who secured their final place with a tap into the empty net after the first shot was superbly saved by Green in the home goal.
After a few weeks of windy, wet conditions it was a relief to have a calm day for this Division 2 League Cup Semi Final. Both teams were able to list full squads after the previous encounter had both teams missing several players each. For this tie Redhall welcomed back Nathan Robertson, Jack Passmore and Ross Graham from injury but were without Adam Robertson and Dylan Keith.
Referee Bathgate got the game underway with both sides having plenty of vocal support. The first chance fell to Livingston as Jack Anderson stumbled on the surface with his back pass. The Livingston forward was in but his shot was well blocked by Green.
Another mix up in the home defence ended with a shot that was lifted over the bar.
Redhall grew into the game with some neat passing moves but the final ball was missing. Long range shots from Lewis Blues and Nathan Robertson were well wide.
More good play from the home side ended with Hannah fizzing a great ball across the box but there were no takers.
Redhall had a good chance after the Livingston keeper spilled a through ball. Nathan Robertson collected the ball, cut past his marker and shot for goal but the keeper was back up to block the shot for a corner.
Next chance for the home side fell to Sam Donachie but his effort lacked power and was gathered in easily by the keeper.
As half time approached Livingston almost grabbed the lead. They won the ball in midfield and played a clever ball over the top of the Redhall back line. The forward was clear and fired towards goal. Green dived low to his left to turn the ball onto the inside of the post with Ewan Mitchell clearing the loose ball. Fantastic save to keep the scores level.
Half Time: Redhall Star 2000s 0-0 Livingston FCBC
Redhall got the second half underway and pushed forward. Taylor, Lewis and Campbell combined well but the final ball forward was out of reach for Donachie.
Livingston had changed their formation and were keen to hit on the break especially with the pace up top. The first real chance of the half was created with that pace as the Livingston forward was clear but again Green turned the ball onto the post and then pounced on the rebound. Another fine save to keep it level.
The home side won a free kick, 25 yards from goal, after a foul. Donachie strode forward and thumped the free kick but a defender flung himself to block the ball for a corner. From the corner Livingston broke with the ball punted long. Their forward was clear but yet again Green saved the lad’s shot.
The game was becoming a bit heated as some late challenges were being put in and there was also plenty going on off the ball. The referee had a quiet word with both sidelines after some verbals across the park at each other.
One goal could settle this tie as both sides battled away. Redhall had a couple of half chances but the ball just wouldn't fall the right way. Livingston created a couple of corners which were headed over.
Jack Anderson fired a low free kick towards goal but no one made the run to connect. Campbell had a couple of clever runs with the ball apparently stuck to his feet but again the final pass was missing.
As we hit the final 15 minutes the deadlock was broken. A Redhall goal kick wasn't challenged for in the midfield and was returned towards the home goal. Billy Whizz was off again and outpaced the home defence. This time he won the battle with Green as he fired low into the far corner. A real body blow for Redhall.
Livingston now had something to hold on to as they defended in numbers. Redhall thumped balls forward and mixed it with balls out wide but again the final ball didn't fall the required way.
As Redhall pushed more men forward Livingston struck again. Taylor attempted to read the throw in but was turned by his man. The shot towards goal was superbly saved by Green but the ball fell to a Livingston player who rolled the ball into the empty net to secure Livingston's place in the final.
Both teams gave it everything in this cup-tie and the first goal was always going to be important. Redhall played some neat football, especially in the first half but the pace Livingston had up front was always going to be a threat and that is where the opening goal came from. The game was tight and could have gone either way. Green, in the home goal, had three outstanding saves while the Livingston forward had pace to burn and will always cause teams problems.
Good luck to Livingston when the final comes around. For Redhall, 16 games left so plenty of football left in the season to put some things right.
Full Time: Redhall Star 2000s 0-0 Livingston FCBC
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