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Sunday, 30 September 2012 23:25

West Lothian net opening day win over Forth Valley

Written by  Alex Schweitzer-Thomson
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West Lothian Schools
Forth Valley Schools
U18 National Cup - Group 4 
Albyn Park, Broxburn
Match report courtesy of www.grassrootsnews.co.uk

Ten-man West Lothian battled to a 3-2 victory over visitors Forth Valley as Group 4 of the Scottish Schools FA Senior National Cup kicked off at Broxburn’s Albyn Park.

A tight affair was reflected by the slender margin of victory, but in the early stages Forth Valley held the upper hand as they set about breaching the West Lothian backline with a short passing game.

This style nearly paid off for the away side as, after neat passing play on the edge of the West Lothian box, Forth Valley’s Chris Ogilvie found himself on the deck after a challenge from West Lothian skipper Graeme Thomson. At first glance it seemed a penalty would be forthcoming, but the referee didn’t flinch. Undeterred at the decision, Forth Valley continued to pass their way into the West Lothian area with left winger, Liam Taggart in particular causing the home rearguard problems.

Despite their pressure, the visitors couldn’t open the scoring and soon found themselves punished. West Lothian won a free-kick 20 yards out, on the left hand side of the Forth Valley penalty area, and Mike Adams curled in a low effort that Forth Valley keeper Craig Morris spilled into the net.

Having taken the lead against the run of play, West Lothian managed to hold on until half time, limiting Forth Valley to ambitious attempts from distance.

Forth Valley were clearly shell shocked as the first half played out and still had not recovered by the second half. West Lothian, on the other hand, came out the traps quickly and substitute Russel Little doubled their lead with a deflected effort, finding the bottom right-hand corner of the net.

The introduction of Russel was a clear turning point in the match, as his goal and physical presence seemed to bring out confidence in his team mates.

Forth Valley continued to press, though, and where eventually rewarded with a goal from substitute Mark Taylor. However, much like West Lothian’s opener, it came against the run of play.

In fact, West Lothian found themselves two goals ahead very soon after as centre back Daniel Nimmo bulleted a header in the Forth Valley net from a free kick from substitute Sean Mclaughlin.

With everything going so well for West Lothian it seemed only a moment of stupidity would deny them victory. Unfortunately for the home side, goal scorer Little managed to pick two needless yellow cards, the first for a reckless challenge in his own area shortly after his strike and a second for failing to retreat the required distance at a Forth Valley free kick. His carelessness certainly put his teammates under pressure as they sought to see out the remainder of the half with ten men.

The momentum was once again in favour of Forth Valley, and the visitors took advantage of a mix-up at the heart of the West Lothian defence, with Taylor flicking the ball into an empty net.

However time ran out for Forth Valley as West Lothian manfully saw out this enthralling encounter to win 3-2.

Full Time: West Lothian Schools 3-2 Forth Valley Schools

West Lothian: Tommy McAllister (Armadale), Marcus Millar (Broxburn), Kyle Miller (Deans), Graeme Thomson (Inveralmond), Michael Lee (James Young), Michael Adams, Jamie Bouhaddou, Robbie Brown, Mark Finnigan, Andrew MacDonald, Sean McLaughlin, Daniel Nimmo (all Linlithgow), Michael Gilmour, Andrew Mcbride, David Porcher (all St Margaret’s), Liam Forbes, Russel Little, Connor McQueenie (all West Calder).

Forth Valley: Nial Morrison, Craig Morris, Lee Hamilton, Ryan Jamieson, Cameron Binnie, Daniel McLaren, Andrew Thomson, Greig Stewart, David Wallace, Matthew Cochrane, Chris Ogilvie, Aidan Stevenson, Mark Taylor, Conlyn Comrie, Declan Fitzpatrick, Liam McRoary, Ian McIntyre, Liam Taggart.
Last modified on Thursday, 03 October 2013 12:34
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