Possession of the football proved key as Hutchinson Vale overcame Musselburgh Windsor in the Tom Wilson Memorial Cup. The second round fixture list threw together two of the top sides from the first division. Following their 2nd round win in the Prison Officers Cup the previous week, Hutchinson Vale were looking to book their place in another 3rd round tie. Whereas Musselburgh were looking to bounce back from their loss to Airdrie United in the Scottish Youth FA Cup.
In the league, both teams are enjoying successful league campaigns, level on points in second position. With knowledge of this and the miserable weather conditions spectators would have been expecting a close-fought, cagy affair. However, this was not the case. Hutchinson Vale had a clear philosophy and it was not going to change, even for the likes of their closest league rivals, Musselburgh Windsor.
From the outset Hutchinson Vale were keen to play a slick possession game, determined to play the ball out from the back. The two centre backs appeared comfortable on the ball and the overlapping fullbacks created an overload in midfield which Musselburgh failed to deal with. However, whilst Hutchinson Vale probed with the ball they never penetrated the final third with any intent.
On 16 minutes, Hutchinson Vale nearly regretted not taking advantage of possession as Musselburgh almost scored an unlikely goal. A long free kick from Daniel Mackinnon into the box led to a scramble, with players falling like bowling pins in the box. Musselburgh managed to get a shot away but fantastic double save from keeper Fraser Britton prevented Hutchinson Vale going behind.
Around half way through the first half Hutchinson Vale began to play with a more attacking intent. Tireless right back, Harry Pullar found himself in the box on numerous occasions whilst Lewis McKay bombed forward on the opposite flank too. After prolonged pressure, in which Hutchinson Vale worked the ball around the opposition half, they forced a corner. Owen Richardson whipped in the corner which found its way to Murray Rose at the back post who headed back across goal. Callum Mackie rose above the rest to head into the bottom right-hand corner and put Hutchie ahead.
The final 15 minutes played out without incident and Musselburgh went in at half time only one goal down. The gulf in class between the two teams in the first half was remarkable, considering where they were in the league. Hutchinson Vale kept the ball as though it were a training drill, but in truth, Musselburgh made it look easy. They failed to close down the opposition and were a lot slower to react than their rivals.