Tynecastle FC met Fauldhouse United in the SPORTSassist South East Region Cup semi-final. The two teams are doing well in Division One of the SERYFA u16s league. Fauldhouse top the division, having been unbeaten so far this season whilst Tynecastle lie in 4th place with games in hand over the teams above them. Both teams are also still in all the local cup competitions and may potentially meet again later in the season. Fauldhouse also have an eye on the Scottish Cup as they face Rossvale FC in the semi-final on the 3rd April. Today’s focus, however, was to book their place in the final of the South East Region Cup against Hutchinson Vale FC.
The game started at a ferocious tempo as Tynecastle and Fauldhouse battled to assert their dominance early on. Both teams, had early half chances with Fauldhouse winning a corner within the first minute and Tynecastle winning a free-kick in a good position two minutes later. Both set pieces came to nothing but it was clear that the teams had an attacking intent from the off.
On 8 minutes, there was an opportunity which summed up the first ten. The ball was passed back to the Fauldhouse keeper and it was chased down by tenacious winger, Martin Maughan. The keeper, taking too long with the ball at his feet, had to hurriedly clear the ball as Maughan sprinted forward. Jumping up, Maughan got his body in front of the ball and it deflected back towards goal. Fortunately, for Fauldhouse keeper, Matthew Craig, the ball went wide. This encapsulated the first 10 minutes as it demonstrated desire, speed and mistakes. Both teams clearly had the desire to get off to a good start hence the game starting at such a quick pace. However, mistakes were made and fouls were conceded, breaking up individual phases of play.
The next 15 minutes saw Tynecastle begin to dominate. On 12 minutes, pressure from Tynecastle forced two corners which Fauldhouse failed to clear. From the second corner, Fauldhouse were caught in possession on the edge of the box as they tried to get rid of the ball and conceded a free-kick which forced another corner. Fauldhouse couldn’t relieve the pressure as their clearances were repeatedly picked off by central midfielders Callum Bremner and Gregor Lamb.
On 19 minutes, Fauldhouse's Elliot Ferrier won a free-kick 20 yards out but Kyle Sampson put it over the bar. Fauldhouse got another rare opportunity two minutes later but the ball was picked off and Tynecastle broke with pace. Bremner, Jackson Cowan and Daniel Purves combined well setting up an opportunity for Cowan to shoot but he fired wide from the edge of the box, 6 yards from centre.
Minutes later Purves got in behind the defence after Maughan played the ball through. Purves shot was deflected onto the crossbar and the ball came out to Bremner whose deflected shot went wide.
On 34 minutes, Maughan drove down the right wing before cutting inside and drawing a foul from a Fauldhouse defender. The resulting free-kick was poor but forced a corner. Craig, the Fauldhouse keeper leapt above the rest to collect the whipped corner ball and launched a counter attack with a huge kick up to Sampson. Sampson was tackled and the ball was passed back to the Tynecastle keeper, Jamie Macpherson. The pass who too short however and Macpherson had to race off his line to clear the ball out of play to prevent the onrushing striker latching onto the end of the pass.
Fauldhouse followed up this counter attack with a number of chances, albeit long range shots which didn’t hit the target. As the first half drew to an end, Fauldhouse had just about clawed themselves back into the game following a poor 15 minute spell where Tynecastle dominated.
Tynecastle had the better of the chances in a frantic first half. Fauldhouse will have been frustrated by their inability to clear their lines and retain possession. The match was littered with fouls and mistakes by both teams but Fauldhouse’s mistakes always seemed to result in them handing over possession. Tynecastle were the more dominant in midfield and got the ball wide effectively. The midfield linked up successfully with the strikers, with Purves holding the ball up magnificently especially considering his small stature.